Instant Reaction: Huskies Fall On First Stop In L.A.

Mike Martin

Instant Reaction

Washington held their biggest lead at 30-23 before settling into a 30-25 advantage at the break. The Huskies did this on the back of 14 points from freshman Jaden McDaniels.  They also had four blocked shots in that opening half.  

However, shots that fell in the first half didn't drop in the second half. The Huskies hung close until the Trojans went on a 13-2 burst midway through the second half.  USC hit just 20 percent of its 3-pointers in the opening half, but upped that to 40 percent in the second half. 

Washington actually had more defensive rebounds than its opponents for a change, 30-29. The Huskies cut down on their turnovers, committing just 11, but they forced only six.

What We Saw

We saw Husky shooters go cold from the floor in the second half on mid-range jumpers, hitting just 1 of 7 attempts.  

We didn't see the Huskies miss critical free throws down the stretch.  In fact, they only missed one free throw all night, but they took only seven. Conversely, Washington shooters too often settled for shots behind the arc ,hitting just 8 of 30, including going 5 for 17 in the second half.

We saw the Huskies get on a roll and build that 30-23 lead. The game seesawed early in the second half before UW shooters took early, ill-advised 3-pointers as the Trojans pulled away.

Turning Point

The Huskies led 42-41 with 12:36 left to play.  The teams traded turnovers for nearly three minutes before USC's Nick Rakocevic made a jumper to give his team the lead it would never relinquish.  

A turning point came with the Huskies trailing 45-42. Naz Carter missed a game-tying 3 and it was rebounded by USC's Elijah Weaver. Three Trojan shots later, Weaver put one in and helped his team pull away.

Key Stats

The Huskies were 0-for-7 in mid-range jumpers in the second half.   

Washington had that 30-29 defensive rebounding advantage, but USC won the battle on the offensive glass 16-9.

Where Do They Go From Here?

Washington moves across town to play the UCLA Bruins, who struggled against the Washington State Cougars before winning 86-83.  The game will be played on ESPN2 on Saturday at 7 p.m.