March: Huskies' Huskie Ball Defense Helps Pass Utah State in First Game of NCAA Tournament


COLUMBUS, Ohio – Since the Sunday of the selection, the Huskies are simmering. All week long, they heard about their incoherent offense that stammered and stagnated on their last outing.

The ninth seed, Washington, opened fire in the first half on Friday and won in the final minutes to win a 78-61 win over Utah, the eighth seed, in the first round of the tournament. NCAA.

The Huskies will face the winner of the match between No. 1 in North Carolina and No. 16 Iona – who will face Friday night – Sunday.

Noah Dickerson scored three funk goals at the right time and led the Huskies with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

Jaylen Nowell added 19 points, five assists and five rebounds, while Nahziah Carter had 13 and Matisse Thybulle finished with 10 points, five flights, three blocks and two rebounds.

The Washington attack ended with an offensive turnaround, with 44 points in the last Saturday's Pac-12 tournament title match, the lowest of the season.

The Huskies led for over 32 minutes and met all the challenges.

The Huskies controlled Sam Merrill for most of the match, before the Aggies' top scorer lost a corner kick to bring UW back to 54-53 with 9:54 left.

That's when Carter became alive.

The second-year guard converted or assisted on the following 11 points when UW took back control.

Carter tied three shots back to back, hit a short rider and found Dickerson under the rim for a dunk.

Washington closed the match on a 24-8 run.

Thybulle hit a three-pointer dagger that gave UW a 72-58 lead with 2:48 left.

The Aggies received 13 points from Brock Miller while Neemias Queta added 11 points and five rebounds. Merrill and Abel Porter finished with 10 points.

Dickerson finished in the first half with a short jumper to give Washington a 40-28 lead at half-time.

It was the Huskies' best performance in the first half of the season. They shot 50% of the field (15 out of 30), 40% on three points (4 out of 10) and managed 6 free shots out of 6.

Washington also imposed 11 turnovers that led to 12 points. UW beat USU 20-12 in the painting.

At the break, the Huskies prevented Merrill from scoring 0-3. He went into the game with an average of 21.2 points.

After falling behind 11-5, Washington used a 9-0 run to take a 14-11 lead.

The state of Utah took the lead (17-16) before Washington closed with a 24-11 spurt.

Thanks to Dickerson, Nowell and a ballhawking defense, the Huskies picked up speed midway through the first half.

Thybulle stole a pass from Miller at the halfway point and led a team to a bit of distance to Washington, allowing Washington to win 34-25 with 3:58 to go first. half.

"They were scared," Crisp shouted during the break, while UW players huddled on the sidelines. "I tell you, they were scared.


  • Mike Hopkins was chosen coach of the year by NABC District 20, while Nowell and Thybulle were chosen as the first team of District 20.


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