For one night, Washington's sputtering offense hummed with near-flawless perfection. Six Huskies scored at least 10 points in the 96-92...
TEMPE, Ariz. — For one night, Washington’s sputtering offense hummed with near-flawless perfection.
Six Huskies scored at least 10 points in the 96-92 win over Arizona State three weeks ago, which was the first time that had happened since Dec. 29, 2011.
Center Aziz N’Diaye, backup guard Andrew Andrews and reserve forward Shawn Kemp Jr. tallied career scoring highs.
C.J. Wilcox and Abdul Gaddy each finished with seven assists and scored in double digits, while utility big man Desmond Simmons added 10 points.
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The Huskies shot 52.9 percent. They scored 50 points in the paint, 21 points off ASU turnovers, 19 second-chance points and 12 fast-break points. They also converted 21 of 22 free throws.
“That was just one of those nights where I felt like I was in high school,” Andrews said. “Where every shot you shoot feels good and it goes down.”
Of course, it couldn’t last. Not this season, when the UW men’s basketball team has been plagued by a paucity of points.
The Huskies are averaging 67.8 points, which ranks ninth in the Pac-12 and is the lowest during Lorenzo Romar’s 11-year coaching tenure.
In the five contests after the ASU game, Washington is averaging 58.6 points.
On Saturday, the Huskies (14-13, 6-8 Pac-12) face the Sun Devils (20-7, 9-5) at Wells Fargo Arena in a rematch that isn’t likely to produce a combined 188 points like their first encounter.
“This time we have to do a better job defensively, because unfortunately that hasn’t been our pattern to come out and score that many points,” Romar said.
In the previous meeting against ASU, the Huskies scored 52 points in the first half, which matched their tally in Wednesday’s 70-52 defeat at No. 12 Arizona.
“Every game we would like to go out and play like we did against Arizona State,” Romar said. “That’s how we would want to play. That’s how we practice.
“The makeup of this year’s team isn’t able to impose its will on teams and make them go up and down like that.”
Aside from Washington’s scoring outburst, the other takeaway from the Sun Devils game in Seattle was the phenomenal performance by ASU freshman point guard Jahii Carson. He finished with a personal-best 32 points, but N’Diaye blocked his running short jumper that would have tied the game with four seconds left.
“He was at the top of his game,” Andrews said. “He was making threes. He was getting into the lane. He’s quick, and he got a lot of transition points. We just have to try to contain him and stay in front of him.”
Arizona State is a game out of first place in the conference standings, and the Sun Devils have aspirations to make the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2010.
Meanwhile, the Huskies are hoping to remain above .500.
“We need to get as good as we can get from here on out,” Romar said. “And we’ve been saying that for a while.”
Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Twitter @percyallen