Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Hoops: Getting Better

Washington 79 - Arizona State 56

Yes, the team that beat us by 17 (though that score makes the game seem closer than it really was) got beaten by 24. The Huskies beat ASU like a big bass drum, pounding them all night. The Husky defense was stifling. ASU could not get the ball to the spots on the floor where they wanted it shooting just 37.5% in the first half and we took advantage of turnovers for quick fast break buckets. By the 10 minute mark in the first half we were ahead 21-6, ahead by 15. The Sun Devils never got closer than that. We led at the half by 17, 42-25 and kept stretching the lead from there. The most we led by was 27 with a couple minutes to go (77 - 50).

Quincy Pondexter played his usual solid game, scoring 17. The biggest difference though was the support he got from Isaiah and MBA. Zeke ended the game with 17. He played much more efficiently on Saturday than he did on Thursday, but his play is still not totally within the team's game as he seems to think "Me first, then you (maybe)" is the way it should be. In the first half, he was running a 2 on 1 fast break from the middle. Q was on the right wing with his hand out calling for the ball. Zeke ignored him and took the ball straight at the defender. When your big guys make the effort to get out on the break like that, you reward them. It will come back to you later because they'll be much more inclined to have your back when you need them. Lucky for him, he put the shot down, but it was an indication to me that he still hasn't learned all the lessons that Lorenzo Romar has to teach him.

Matthew Bryan-Amaning played the best game I have witnessed this season. He was solid on defense, active on the offensive and defensive boards (9 in all) , and a more effective scorer finishing with 12. Thank you, sir, for showing up. That is the performance we need from you every night. It is a sight I could get used to seeing.

Venoy added 9, Scott Suggs got 8, Justin Holiday had 7, Elston Turner had 5, Tyreese Breshears had 3 and Clarence Trent got 1 to round out the scoring.

We shot much better from the free throw line and from the field overall.

Before the game we were the only Pac-10 team in second place with four teams tied for first. At the end of the weekend because of losses by 3 of those 4 teams (Arizona, ASU and UCLA) there's only 1 team in first (Cal) and 4 tied for second (including us). We play Cal on their court on Thursday. We beat them by 15 here last month, we are certainly capable of doing that again. After all, we just beat 2 of the 4 teams tied for first.

Unfortunately, we have yet to play a road game the way we play our home games. In the comfy confines of Hec Ed with the band playing, the student section rocking, and most of the crowd roaring approval, they play well. Out on the road in unfriendly territory, not so much. If UW is to play well in the post season (or play at all, for that matter) then they will have to figure out how to win on the road. I'd say that this week is a good time to do that, with Cal on Thursday and Stanford on Saturday. We've beaten them both before; do it again, Dawgs!

Good luck to you, men.

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I'm currently 60 years old. I currently work as the learning management system specialist for American University of Madaba in Madaba, Jordan. I was originally certified as a high-school English teacher and taught school for 13 years (1 year of substituting, 1 year of 7th grade, 2 years of a combined 5th, 6th, 7th grade, 9 years of 8th grade). I've worked for hardware and software companies for the past 23 years doing training, training materials development, certification test development and other education related stuff. My wife and I have raised four children to adulthood; some of them live at home at the moment, but that won't last (they're too independent for that). We live at home with 2 Golden Retrievers, 2 black cats, a crazy cat, and, during the winter, 70,000 coho salmon.