UW Men's Basketball
A "big deal" — Huskies end hex
Seattle Times staff reporter
Bobby Jones fulfilled a promise. Brandon Roy answered a plea.
Together they lifted the Washington Huskies to one of their most satisfying wins of the season, an 82-70 men's basketball victory yesterday over UCLA in front of 10,000 at Edmundson Pavilion.
Washington, which earned its first home win over the Bruins since 2001, had lost seven of its previous eight games to UCLA, including a 95-86 defeat in Los Angeles last month. The Huskies blew a 21-point first-half lead in that loss.
"We knew we had to beat them here or it was going to be tough to beat them anywhere," said Roy, who played his best overall game since a knee injury in November.
Roy led the Huskies with 20 points, 13 rebounds and five assists, and also made the defensive play of the day after he tracked down UCLA guard Jordan Farmar from behind to block an apparent breakaway layin with 4:35 left in the game and UW ahead seven. Farmar broke open after Roy hit two free throws, racing past Will Conroy, who then called out to Roy.
"Last thing I heard was Will saying, 'B get him! B get him!' " Roy said.
Roy did just that, shocking Farmar, who was preparing to dunk.
"That was huge," said Washington coach Lorenzo Romar. "For him to run like that and come up with that block, that always serves as an inspiration to your team."
Jones followed the block with a three-point shot on the other end. That put Washington up by 10 and all but clinched the win, which allowed the No. 13 Huskies (9-2 Pac-10, 19-3 overall) to stay tied atop the Pac-10 with Arizona.
The shot was the third three-pointer of the game for Jones, setting a career-high for a player known more for his defense and ability to score inside the past two seasons.
That Jones had his breakout-shooting game against the Bruins was no coincidence. He had pointed to this game since the loss at UCLA, which he called the worst performance of his college career. Playing in front of friends and family from Los Angeles, Jones had just two points and one rebound on Jan. 8.
"I might as well have not even played because all I did was be a negative thing for the team," Jones said. "And I did apologize and said I would never make that performance again."
Yesterday, Jones made good on his words this time, finishing with 17 points and seven rebounds. Washington outrebounded UCLA 43-34, including 22 offensive rebounds, a stat Bruins coach Ben Howland said was the key to the game.
But UCLA forward Dijon Thompson seemed to blame the Bruins' game plan. "It's almost impossible to stop four guys (crashing the boards) when you've got three guys going back (on defense)," he said. "It's almost like you're sacrificing transition buckets."
UCLA led 18-16 midway through the first half. Following a timeout in which Romar lashed out at his team's defensive effort, Washington grabbed a 34-24 lead. But UCLA (6-5, 12-7) cut the deficit to 36-32 at halftime.
Washington began the second half with another big run, taking a 62-47 lead with 10:34 left. But UCLA roared back again.
When the Huskies displayed some of the impatience that killed them in their last game against UCLA, Romar called a timeout to settle things down.
Still, UCLA cut it to 67-62 when Roy — who scored 16 points in the final 13:03 — hit his two free throws, then made the block heard 'round Montlake.
The win was UW's 20th in a row at home. The last home loss came against the Bruins on Jan. 10, 2004, something of which the Huskies players were well aware.
"This was definitely a big deal," Roy said. "They felt like, 'We've got your number' and we were like, 'No.' Nate (Robinson) wanted it. Will wanted it. You could see it in their eyes."
• The win was also UW's 14th straight at home in Pac-10 play, a school record.
• Washington won despite shooting just 37.8 percent, its second-lowest percentage of the season.
• Lake Washington graduate Brian Morrison, a senior guard for UCLA who torched the Huskies with 19 points in L.A., didn't have much of a homecoming. He was taunted throughout by a boisterous UW student section and fouled out with six points.
• UW signee Jon Brockman sat behind the bench with Seattle Prep junior Spencer Hawes.
|UCLA (12-7, 6-5 Pac-10)|
|WASHINGTON (19-3, 9-2)|
Attendance: 10,000 (Sellout). Officials: Mark Reischling, Rick Batsell, Brian Sorenson.Technical fouls: UCLA-None. Washington-None.
Copyright © 2005 The Seattle Times Company