After some shooting efforts below average, the Huskies won an 83-59 win over East Washington behind 25 points from Dominic Green. The Huskies still have one game before playing Gonzaga, n ° 1 next Wednesday.
The players in gray jerseys represented eastern Washington, but the Huskies were actually playing against themselves.
Even though the men's basketball team from Washington came into play on Tuesday with a respectable 4-2 record, UW has hardly been synchronized this season due to a lack of cohesion and unable to pull right .
But ahead of 6,054 at Alaska Airlines Arena, Washington finally shared the ball and made some shots at the perimeter, which gave Mike Hopkins the balanced point production.
And if the Huskies are likely to reach next week a huge surprise against Gonzaga, No. 1, they will need a new performance after their win 83-59 last night.
"I do not care if you win by one, you win by 20 or whatever, I just want to play well," Hopkins said. "It's never about the clock, it's about our performance.
"We moved the ball as well as we did. We found the shooters. When you do that, it's a positive atmosphere and you have a good rhythm. And we managed to shoot down some shots.
Nothing indicates that Washington is considering its confrontation with the Bulldogs, which could be the biggest match of the season – if not the decade – for the Huskies and their sore fans who have seen the Zags rise to the rank of power. UW National has missed the NCAA tournament in the past seven years.
But a few days ago, Hopkins acknowledged that the Huskies had the incredible opportunity to win a victory like last year's victory over the road against Kansas number 2, which galvanized the team to a surprising season of 21 wins.
In his first big test of the season, Washington was eliminated from the field during an embarrassing 88-66 loss to the 11th Auburn two weeks ago.
And last week, the Huskies were led 68-66 in the final seconds against Minnesota in the final of the Vancouver Showcase.
Washington had little to win and much to lose Tuesday against Eastern Washington, who was 1-14 against UW in a series started in 1989.
Even in the absence of All-Pac-12 forward Noah Dickerson, sick and absent in the first period, the Huskies should comfortably impose themselves against an EWU team that has not managed only 34 and 47 points in the asymmetric defeats at the start of the season, respectively. .
But it was not enough for UW to rise to the top of the scoreboard.
The Huskies needed David Crisp, an extremely inconsistent player, to break all four games. They needed the much-maligned Matisse Thybulle, who had converted just 3 of 22 shots to three points, to get on the right track.
And they needed someone on the bench to emerge in an offensive way.
Check. Check. And check.
Crisp was remarkably effective, scoring 14 points on 5 shots out of 7, including three to three points.
Thybulle connected on 2 of the 5 three points and finished with eight points, three blocks, two interceptions and two assists.
And substitute guard Dominic Green exploded for 25 points and 7 points at three points – two career highs.
The superlative performance almost eclipsed the near-triple outing of Jaylen Nowell, the vanguard, who finished with eight points, nine rebounds and seven assists.
"Today, we just had more awareness," Hopkins said. "The ball was jumping. We look really good. Matisse looked good. David was superb. The ball found the man open and unfortunately for them, it was Dominic Green. "
The 6-foot-6 scorer had struggled this season, scoring only 7 out of 21 behind the arc, which could explain why Eastern has left him alone in the corner.
"I had the impression that they had just fallen asleep," said Green, who converted 7 out of 10 attempts in three points. "I had a very bad game before I was so much on the radar.
"When they worry about Jaylen, Dave or Matisse and even Noah. He is excellent for leaving the job. When they worry about these guys, it just allows me to hang out and find free space. "
It was almost a historic night for Green, who made a positive check-out more than six minutes late and lost two points to three points before reaching UW's record set by Ryan Appleby in 2008.
"I never think he's going to miss it," Crisp said. "If you look at it openly, it's like a lay-up. He continued to look open and they did not make any adjustments. "
Washington entered the game in 300th place nationally in three-point shooting (29.5%) and ranked 319th in the country with 10.3 assists per game.
But in their best game of the season, the Huskies sank 12 of 28 from downtown. They also had 14 assists on 28 placements, a highlight in the season.
"When the ball appears, it's fun to play," Hopkins said. "When the ball stops, no. The great thing about our team is that we have a lot of very good players. Tonight was Dominic Green's night. Tomorrow it may be Matisse.
"These are all threats. … but the ball must keep moving and that 's what happened tonight. "
Before scoring 35-25 at half-time, Washington started the second half with a 28-14 run that set the game aside. Green's last pointer gave the Huskies a 63-40 lead with 11:01 to go.
Eastern, who had 15 points from Jesse Hunt, his team's record, and dropped to 1-4, has never approached the remaining 22 points.
Hopkins was finally able to give the UW Reservists quality minutes and emptied the bench for the first time this season.
The Huskies ended the meeting with a training that included Bryan Penn-Johnson and Jamal Bey – a pair of freshmen – alongside a trio of devotees (Jason Crandall, Travis Rice and Reagan Lundeen) who started their season.
It was a satisfying end for Washington (5-2), who has a final focus on Sunday against UC Santa Barbara before facing Gonzaga.
"Every game is different and every game has different challenges," Hopkins said. "The main goal is that our intention is to move the ball, to jump it.
"That's what good offensive teams do."