BOULDER, Colo. – They looked good and felt even better. Andrew Andrews expected every shot that left his hands Thursday at Utah’s Huntsman Center was going to nestle into the bottom of the net.
However, his perimeter jumpers sailed long and fell short. They drifted right and left, rattled in and out, bounded off the rim or missed it completely.
Undeterred, Washington’s third-year sophomore guard, who shoots 36.3 percent from the field, didn’t stop firing.
“If you stop shooting, you’re going to lose confidence, and once you lose confidence then it just goes way down from there,” Andrews said. “They looked good. They felt good when I was shooting it. They just didn’t fall for me.”
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After missing his first 10 field goals, he connected on a layup with 3:33 left. And then, he missed his last shot – a three-pointer.
When it was over, Andrews was 1 for 12 from the field and 0 for 7 behind the arc during Washington’s 78-69 defeat.
The game provided further proof to a popular belief that as Andrews goes, so go the Huskies.
“We all know what we’re going to get from C.J. (Wilcox),” Andrews said. “We know what Nigel (Williams-Goss) is going to do. So usually when all three of us play well, it usually ends up panning out well for us.”
Wilcox, Washington’s leading scorer who averages 19.8 points, has scored at least 14 points in all but one game. Williams-Goss is second on the team, scoring 13.2 points per game.
“We just need that third guy because Nigel, he’s solid,” Wilcox said. “He’s solid every game. We can count on him to do what he does best every game.
“We just need that extra person. Andrew has been in a shooting slump, but the last game he also had six assists. As long as he does something to contribute.”
During Pac-12 play, Washington is 2-4 when Andrews falls short of his 12.1 scoring average.
He dismissed any notion that his confidence is shaken entering Sunday’s 5 p.m. game at Colorado’s Coors Events Center.
“Not at all,” Andrews said. “I’m a very confident player. Everybody misses shots. There was a stretch were Ray Allen didn’t make a three for a few games, and he kept shooting. I’m not comparing myself to Ray Allen, but you just have to have that confidence inside you to just keep shooting.”
Said coach Lorenzo Romar: “If you’re not knocking shots down, just be patient and wait for the next good one to come. And they’ll eventually go in.”
Andrews had one of his best games Jan. 12 against then-No. 15 Colorado while scoring 19 points on 8-for-14 shooting.
He admitted it was a strange game in which Wilcox scored a career-high 31 points and the Buffaloes lost star guard Spencer Dinwiddie to a season-ending knee injury.
Washington’s 71-54 win started a tailspin for Colorado, which had lost 4 of 5 games before winning its previous two contests.
Both teams desperately need to win the rematch to bolster their sagging NCAA tournament hopes.
Colorado (17-6, 6-4 Pac-12) is in a five-way tie for third in the conference.
Washington (13-10) is 5-5 and tied for seventh in the league with eight games remaining.
“It’s a point of very, very little margin for error,” Romar said. “That’s where we are.”
Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or firstname.lastname@example.org