Washington basketball won their third game in a row Tuesday night to increase record to 4-1. They had a rough first half shooting only 23% from the field and being behind as much as 13 points before rallying to close the lead to 38-33 at the end of the first half.
Mike Hopkins’ Washington basketball team trailed much of the game. It wasn’t until the 9:25 mark of the second half when UW evened things out. They were in the middle of an 11-0 run over A&M, taking the lead at 56-55. The game was close the rest of the way although the Aggies never took back the lead. Washington’s defense held the Aggies to only three made baskets in the last 11:30 of the game.
The Huskies were led by Noah Dickerson‘s 24 points, followed by Jaylen Nowell with 14. This was after Nowell had tied his career high of 32 points on Sunday night against Santa Clara. Due to foul trouble, he played 30 minutes this game, five less than his season average.
Takeaway 1 – Noah Richardson
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Richardson was the player of the game for the Huskies. Not only did he lead the team in scoring with 24 points he had 17 rebounds including 11 offensive on the offensive end with seven in the first half. He didn’t have a good night shooting making 7 out of 19 shots in the field but did make 10 out of 17 at the foul line.
Takeaway 2 – Second half turnaround
Watching the Huskies play in the first half, it was amazing to think they were only down 38-33 at halftime since they shot a very poor 23% from the field. In the second half, they looked like a different team getting back into the game with an 11-0 run with less than eight minutes remaining in the game. Tough defense and getting the ball inside to Noah Richardson was a big part of the difference plus the third takeaway.
Takeaway 3 – Hustle
Hustle was the major reason Washington was able to get back into the game. It fueled their second-half turnaround and why Richardson was player of the game. Not only did he dominate the boards, but he was also on the floor chasing after loose balls along. His hustle sent him to the charity stripe 17 times.
The Huskies improved hustle showed in their defense, especially in the second half. For example, Matisse Thybulle blocked a shot with 3:33 minutes left in the game. The shot looked like a sure thing before Thybulle came out of nowhere.
I am sure Coach Hopkins will remind the team about hustling because it will make a huge difference and be the reason UW has a winning season. It certainly was a major reason why the Huskies won this game.
Next game is tonight (Wednesday) against the Minnesota Golden Gophers again at the Vancouver Showcase in Vancouver B.C. This too will be a game won’t be easy for the Huskies to win. They will need to hustle once again with Noah Richardson and Jaylen Nowell leading the way.