Washington basketball fell again on Thursday after holding a double-digit lead in the second half at Utah
Washington basketball has been struggling to close games. Thursday night at Utah was yet another example of that, as the Huskies led by as many as 12 points in the second half, but ended up losing the game 67-66. The Utes were definitely aided by some questionable calls from Pac-12 officials late, as all of their final 12 points came at the free-throw line. A technical foul call on Jaden McDaniels, along with a very questionable foul on a three-pointer was all part of a confusing sequence that saw the Utes shoot four straight free-throws, get the ball back, and then shoot more free-throws.
Riley Battin led the Utes with 17 points, while Timmy Allen and Rylan Jones each had 13. Mikael Jantunen contributed 10 points off the bench, and the Utes had 18 offensive rebounds compared to Washington’s five, which has been one of the Huskies’ weakest areas all season.
McDaniels led the Huskies with 14 points, followed by Isaiah Stewart with 13. Hameir Wright who has had struggles on the offensive end all year long, contributed 12 points, all coming on three-pointers.
The Huskies did have a chance to win the game but had trouble getting ball up the floor, and then they were unable to get the ball into Isaiah Stewart, who was double-teamed. This led to Jamal Bey trying to take the final shot, and being called for an offensive foul in the process.
This game was as close to must-win for Washington this season. Now going to Colorado on Saturday, that becomes a must-win game. The Huskies have a conference record of 2-5 with eleven games remaining on the schedule, and if they want any hope of making the NCAA Tournament, they need to figure it out now.
Mike Hopkins needs to find a way to figure this team out. He has the talent on it to be one of the best teams in the country, but the Huskies just haven’t put it together yet.