The # 5 seeded University of Washington Men’s Basketball team ( 21-12, 10-8 Pac-12) will face # 1 seed Saint Mary’s (29-5, 16-2 WAC) on Monday, March 18th at 8 p.m. in a second-round matchup of the NIT Tournament. The Huskies defeated Boise State 77 to 74 in round one to earn the California trip.
UW head coach Mike Hopkins is familiar with the Gaels coaching staff and is expecting a tough match against a team that has won a lot of games.
- The Gaels are in their sixth NIT in program history. SMC has advanced to the NIT in 2008-09, 2010-11, 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16.
- Saint Mary’s is 6-5 all-time in the National Invitation Tournament. Saint Mary’s is now 6-2 all-time at home in NIT games.
- The Gaels have now reached the postseason in 11 straight seasons under head coach Randy Bennett.
- Saint Mary’s has the nation’s 6th best win percentage (85.3). The Gaels have had 29 wins in each of the last three seasons (2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18).
- With a win on Monday night, it will mark the first time in program history SMC will have 30 wins in a season.
- 2017-18 marked the first season in program history in which two players were named to the NABC First Team. Seniors Jock Landale and Emmett Naar were named to the First Team.
- Since 1959, the Gaels are 11-14 (NCAA, NIT) and 10-11 under Head Coach Randy Bennett in the postseason.
- Washington has its first 20-win season since 2011-12 after defeating Oregon State last week. UW went 9-22 last season.
- First year head coach Mike Hopkins was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year becoming just the sixth first year Pac-12 coach to earn the coach of the year honors and the first since 2006-07.
- UW is in its ninth NIT in program history and the first since 2016. The Huskies are 8-8 overall in NIT games.
- Junior Matisse Thybulle was named the 2018 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year becoming the first UW player to earn the award.
- Freshman Jaylen Nowell recorded his 10th 20-plus scoring effort against Boise State with a team-high 25 points. He has reached at least 10 points in 29 of his 33 games as a freshman.UW has a 3-1 record over top 25 teams this season, defeating No. 2 Kansas on the road, No. 25 Arizona State and No. 9 Arizona with it’s lone loss coming against No. 12 Gonzaga.
- The last time Washington had three wins over top 25 teams was the 2014-15 season.