Huskies overcome defiant Cal 66-56

The Washington Huskies ( 13-4, 3-1 Pac-12) pulled out a gritty 66 to 56 win over the California Golden Bears (7-10, 1-3) to win their second consecutive Conference game in front of an appreciative home crowd.  The game was also the Huskies first Conference game at home.

The game was a tough, rough and physical encounter due to both teams implementing a zone press that was both half and full court. The press affected both teams ability to execute on the offensive end.  After being tied at 11 at the 12:53 mark, both teams went scoreless until the 9: 10-minute mark when Noah Dickerson gave the Huskies the lead.

The Huskies went on a 7-0 run but were unable to secure the lead as the Cal press forced the Huskies to turn the ball over nine times in the first. Like the Huskies Cal was able to stay within striking distance but was unable to take the lead due to its self-inflicted wounds. Cal had 10 turnovers in the first half

The Huskies went into the halftime break with a 28 -24 lead after making just 10-of 24 field goal attempts( 41%). Cal was no better as the visitors made just 10-of 26 shots for a  42.7 shooting percentage.

After the break, the Huskies looked like they had mastered the Cal press when they took a nine-point lead on a Matisse Thybulle jumper with just over 18 minutes to play in the game. Thybulle picked up his fourth foul of the game and exited at the 16: 48-minute mark and his absence seemed to rattle the Huskies offensively.

Just like the first half, the Huskies went into turnover mode and Cal cut the Huskies lead to just one point at  35 to 34 with 15:23 to go in the game. Washington committed 11 second-half turnovers and finished with 20 for the game.

That is as close as the Bears would come to taking the lead as the went to the three-point arc to extend their lead to 16 points with 7:01 left in the game.  David Crisp hit two threes and Nahziah Carter added a three-pointer and two field goals to seal the victory for the Huskies.

GAME NOTES

  • Washington snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Bears.
  • Jaylen Nowell scored 20 points to lead the Huskies in scoring.
  • Cals Justice Suein turned in his second-straight 20-point game with a career-high 27 points. It was his third 20-point game of the season.
  • Both Sueing and Darius McNeill are tied with three 20-point games, second only to Don Coleman‘s six games with 20 or more. Sueing went 11-16, including 4-5 from beyond the arc.

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