Huskies Bounce Back From Major Embarrassment to Lose in Final Minute

Arizona State outscores UW 8-0 over last 58 seconds to sweep.
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As always, Remy Martin, the Pac-12's leading scorer, came ready to play.

Surprisingly, so did the University of Washington basketball team.

Martin, however, was still more prepared.

The Sun Devils' 6-foot scoring machine supplied his team's first 7 points, and 13 of the first 17, and finished with 31, and Arizona State completed a doubleheader sweep of the Huskies, beating them 80-72 on Thursday night in Tempe, Arizona.

Interestingly enough, the Sun Devils pulled this one out by outscoring the UW 8-0 over the final 58 seconds -- and Martin could only watch.

Alonzo Verge and Kimani Lawrence each provided four points to close in a rush, with Verge breaking a 72-all tie with a pair of free throws to enable ASU (9-11 overall, 6-8 Pac-12) to win.

Lawrence, a 6-foot-8 senior, finished with 21 points and 20 rebounds.

The Huskies (5-19, 4-15), after pressing the issue for 39 minutes and preventing a second embarrassment in the desert, missed their final six shots.

Beaten by 33 by ASU two nights earlier, Mike Hopkins' team took much more of an interest in the rematch.

"The thing I'm really proud of the guys is, after we've struggled, we've bounced back," Hopkins said. "It's a mindset."

The coach started guards Marcus Tsohonis and Quade Green together for the first time, rather than one or the other. Tsohonis stepped in for Erik Stevenson.

It was a huge concession for Hopkins, who stubbornly has gone with the same five players throughout this dismal season unless someone was ill or in trouble.

This time, he also used only seven players. 

Green led the Huskies with 16 points and had 7 assists, Jamal Bey added 14 points and Stevenson had 13 points coming off the bench. 

The fast-emerging Cole Bajema, the 6-foot-7 sophomore guard, hit all 4 of his shots, 3 from 3-point range, and chipped in 11 points. He was on the floor for much of the second half. 

"He's showing more and more confidence, which is a huge thing as we move forward," Hopkins said.

Cole Bajema hit all four of his shots against the Sun Devils.

Cole Bajema scores two of his 11 points over Remy Martin. 

Even 6-foot-11 sophomore Nate Roberts grabbed 11 rebounds, just the second double-digit board effort for the UW this season. He had the other, with 10 against Montana.

But it wasn't nearly enough.

The Huskies seemed much more in control offensively, though Green, with the extra playmaker in Tsohonis alongside him, now felt compelled to launch his fair share of bad shots. 

"We just fought tonight," Green said. "Kept fighting, kept fighting, kept fighting."

Down by 7 early on, they battled back to tie things at 21 on Tsohonis' fouled put-back and ensuing free throw.

The Huskies, with Bey scoring their last six points of the half, settled into a halftime tie at 35.

ASU, which had just seven scholarship players available because of injuries, kept the ball in the hands of Martin as much as possible. He totaled 19 by intermission, hitting 8 of 13 shot attempts on a variety of clever ploys. 

On a 3-pointer, he leaned into Bajema, trying to draw the foul, and shot awkwardly but saw the ball go in. Still, he complained to a official that he got fouled. 

Play didn't stop nor did ceremony break out at any time, but Martin, just 3:49 into the action, hit a driving lay-in that made him the sixth all-time scorer in ASU history. 

"He's really fast, really strong, really confident," Hopkins said. "He knows how to sell the game."

Remy White of ASU goes for two of his 31 points.

Remy Martin slips through the Husky defense. 

Martin, falling two shy of his career high, scored his final two against the Huskies on a long 3-pointer with 3 minutes left to give the Sun Devils a 72-20 advantage.

He basically just set it up for his teammates to finish off. The UW had no answer.

"We're still not happy we lost," Hopkins pointed out. "We didn't make the plays down the stretch. We didn't make the plays to win on the road."

The Huskies finish up this three-game Arizona tour against Arizona on Saturday.

Follow Dan Raley of Husky Maven on Twitter: @DanRaley1 and @HuskyMaven

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