SEATTLE — Washington went on a 22-2 run spanning nearly eight minutes (7:54) of both the first and second halves, and eventually defeated Sacramento State, 57-41, on Friday evening at Alaska Airlines Arena.
The Hornets held a 22-19 lead at halftime, but the Huskies, a Pac-12 Conference team, outscored Sacramento State by a 38-19 margin in the second half. During that second half, the Hornets shot just 3-for-22 from the field, 1-of-9 from the 3-point line and turned the ball over 10 times. Sacramento State scored five more points from the free throw line (12-16) in the second half than points from the field (7).
Sacramento State's defense, which entered the game ranked first in the Big Sky Conference allowing just 63.0 points per contest, was impressive again. The Hornets held Washington to a season-low 57 points, but could not get anything going offensively. In fact, the Hornets' 41 points were the program's lowest total since scoring 36 in a loss at Washington State on Nov. 30, 2010.
The Hornets, who led by as many as nine points in the first half (20-11 with 6:16 left), finished the game shooting 26% (12-46) from the field and 21% (3-14) from the 3-point line. The Hornets did go to the free throw line 19 times, converting 14 of those attempts (74%). The Huskies, who missed their first 11 3-point attempts of the game, finished 44% (21-48) from the floor, 16% (3-19) from distance and 71% (12-17) from the free throw line.
With the victory, Washington improved to a perfect 6-0 at home, and 8-4 overall this season. One of those victories at home was an 83-59 victory over Big Sky foe Eastern Washington on Nov. 27. The Huskies also improved to 3-0 all-time against Sacramento State with each of those victories coming in Seattle. The two teams were playing each other for the first time since an 83-74 Washington win on Nov. 19, 2006.
Sacramento State dropped to 6-3 overall, and 1-3 on the road. The Hornets, who were playing their final non-conference game of the season, will enter the 20-game Big Sky portion of the schedule with their best non-conference winning percentage (.667) since joining the league in 1996.
Sacramento State, which has defeated three Pac-12 teams since 2009, dropped to 4-40 all-time against the Pac-12's current affiliates.
Every Hornet player that attempted a field goal shot below 50 percent from the field as Sacramento State had season lows in points (41), field goals made (12), field goal percentage (26%), 3-pointers made (3) and assists (8). The Hornets and Huskies finished with the same amount of rebounds (32), but the Hornets were forced into a season-high 21 turnovers. Washington held sizable advantages in points in the paint (34-12), points off turnovers (24-10) and bench points (15-4). The Hornets entered the game averaging 25.6 points per game from its bench.
For Sacramento State, both Marcus Graves and Joshua Patton had 12 points. Patton has now scored in double figures in all nine games and he added four rebounds, three blocked shots and one steal this evening. Graves' 12 points accompanied a game-high six rebounds and a pair of assists. No other Hornet player scored more than six points.
Bryce Fowler had six points and three rebounds, Ethan Esposito posted four points and five rebounds, and Osi Nwachukwu tallied four points, three rebounds and a steal. Izayah Mauriohooho-Le'afa rounded out the six Hornets that cracked the scoring column with three points, four rebounds and two steals.
The Hornets played 10 players in tonight's game, and four of the five starters played at least 32 minutes.
Washington was led by Matisse Thubulle and Noah Dickerson who each had 12 points while Nahziah Carter had 11 points and six rebounds.
Sacramento State will take the next seven days off before opening Big Sky play at home against Northern Colorado on Saturday, Dec. 29, at 7:05 p.m. After the Northern Colorado game, the Hornets will play four of their next five games on the road.
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