Chriss leads Washington to 100-67 rout of Mount St. Mary's
SEATTLE (AP) The physical challenge was going to be obvious for Washington, returning home less than a week after playing its season opener 7,000 miles away in China.
What impressed Washington coach Lorenzo Romar was the ability to push aside any lingering fatigue - physical and mental - and never give visiting Mount St. Mary's a chance.
''I keep saying, `Is this group really like this?' They really like playing together. They really want to do the right thing. They are really up to the challenge,'' Romar said. ''They continue to keep confirming what we have been seeing for quite a while now. This was further evidence that this team is going to try and play right.''
Marquese Chriss scored 29 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, Andrew Andrews added 20 points, and Washington followed up on its season-opening victory with a 100-67 win over Mount St. Mary's on Thursday night in the Huskies home opener.
After knocking off Texas in Shanghai six days earlier, the Huskies (2-0) scored jumped out to a 17-0 lead, led by 23 at halftime and were never tested by the Mountaineers in the final 20 minutes.
The undersized Mountaineers couldn't find an answer for Chriss, who scored however he wanted, whether the play was designed for him or he was scrambling for loose balls and scoring off rebounds. Chriss made 11 of 18 shots and grabbed six rebounds, scoring on fastbreak dunks, mid-range jumpers and even knocked down a 3-pointer.
''I didn't really set any expectations for myself,'' Chriss said. ''I started making a couple of shots and I was feeling it a little bit and I just kept shooting.''
After knocking off the Longhorns in the first regular season college basketball game played in China, the Huskies returned to Seattle last Sunday and began the process of getting their clocks adjusted. They appeared back in sync during an impressive first half.
Washington reached the 100-point mark for the first time since scoring 109 in a victory over California in February 2011. It was the 22nd time under Romar the Huskies reached the century mark.
Washington took away any doubt thanks to a 17-0 run to start the game as Mount St. Mary's missed its first seven shots. Matisse Thybulle had all 8 of his first-half points within the first 4 1/2 minutes and the Huskies showed there was no jet lag from its trip to China. Chriss scored on dunks, mid-range jumpers and knocked down a 3-pointer.
Andrews scored 7 straight for Washington midway through the second half and posted his second straight 20-point game to begin the season. David Crisp added 13 points and Dejounte Murray added 11 points, nine rebounds and five assists.
''It was hard for us during the week because we didn't feel like we were getting enough sleep, but everybody got back on their sleeping schedules and we were fine,'' Chriss said.
Junior Robinson led the Mountaineers (0-3) with 16 points. The preseason favorites of the Northeast Conference couldn't overcome the shooting problems of the first half and shot just 24 percent on 3-pointers.
B.K. Ashe finished with 13 points and Khalid Nwandu added 12 points for Mount St. Mary's.
Mount St. Mary's: The Mountaineers played their third of four major opponents to begin the season. Mount St. Mary's opened with games at No. 3 Maryland and Ohio State before its trip to the Pacific Northwest to face the Huskies and No. 10 Gonzaga. ... The Mountaineers attempted a season-high 37 3-pointers. They attempted 33 in the season opener against Maryland.
Washington: The Huskies won their 13th straight home opener under Romar. ... The Huskies dominated the boards with a 60-29 rebounding advantage.
Chriss' 29 points were the most by a Washington freshman since Nigel Williams-Goss scored 32 against Oregon State during the 2013-14 season.
Mount St. Mary's: The Mountaineers face No. 10 Gonzaga on Saturday.
Washington: The Huskies host Penn on Saturday.