Pac-12 regular-season champion Washington will play its first game in the conference tournament Thursday against either No. 8 WSU or No. 9 Oregon State.
Stanford’s 75-70 victory over favored California Sunday in Palo Alto, CA., back-doored the Washington Huskies into the Pac-12 regular-season championship and the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament that starts Wednesday at Staples Center in Los Angeles. This marks just the third outright league title for the Huskies, the others coming in 1953 and 2009.
The Huskies, who fell to UCLA 75-69 Saturday in Los Angeles in their final regular-season game, needed a Cardinal win over the Bears to clinch the regular-season title and No. 1 seed, which is the biggest gift that Stanford gave UW Sunday.
With the No. 1 seed, Washington will play the winner of Wednesday’s Washington State-Oregon State game at noon Thursday. Had Cal won, the Huskies would have been the No. 2 seed, matching them against Wednesday’s Stanford-Arizona State winner.
Washington swept Washington State and Oregon State during the regular season, beating the Cougars Jan. 15 in Seattle 75-65, and Feb. 25 in Pullman, 59-55. The Huskies defeated Oregon State 95-80 Dec. 29 in the opening game of the Pac-12 season, and again Feb. 12, 75-72.
Washington State, the No. 8 seed in the Pac-12 tournament, swept its season series from the No. 9 Beavers, winning 81-76 Dec. 31, and 83-73 Feb. 9.
The Huskies came close to losing the No. 1 seed Sunday after Stanford squandered a 15-point first-half lead, as well as a 70-62 advantage with 3:01 to play, but the Cardinal fended off a surging Cal down the stretch mainly with free throws. Stanford’s victory set the final regular-season Pac-12 standings, ranked in order of tournament seed:
Final Pac-12 Conference Standings / Seeds
Washington’s games against Washington State were close affairs. The Huskies had a blowout at home against the Beavers, but eked out a three-point win in Corvallis. Washington’s recaps with WSU and Oregon State:
Washington 75, Washington 65 (Jan. 15)
AT SEATTLE: Terrence Ross scored a career-high 30 points, including 28 in 18 minutes of the second half, and pulled down a career-high 14 rebounds, leading Washington. Ross’s consecutive 3-pointers keyed a 26-6 UW run after a rare technical foul on coach Lorenzo Romar. The Huskies trailed by 10 points with 12:16 left.
Washington 59, Washington State 55 (Feb. 25)
AT PULLMAN: Tony Wroten, UW’s leading scorer, tallied 21 points, including 9 of 12 from the free throw line. The Huskies (20-8, 13-3) erased a 45-32 deficit with 11 minutes left. The game came down to free throws. In the first half, WSU (14-14, 6-10) went 11 of 12 to keep the game tied at 28. In the second half, the Cougars shot 6 of 20 from the line. The Huskies, who were 2 of 5 in the first half, finished 17 of 24. The Cougars out-rebounded the Huskies 42-35. C.J. Wilcox had 16 points for Washington while Abdul Gaddy had 10.
Washington 95, Oregon State 80 (Dec. 29)
AT SEATTLE: Freshman Tony Wroten scored 26 points with nine rebounds, four assists and just two turnovers, powering Washington (7-5, 1-0). Washington controlled early, weathered an Oregon State rally that saw the Beavers cut the lead to 83-80, then raced away. C.J. Wilcox scored 15 points for Washington. Joe Burton led Oregon State with 18. Jared Cunningham, the Pac 12′s leading scorer entering the game, finished with 15 points, two in the second half.
Washington 75, Oregon State 72 (Feb. 12)
AT CORVALLIS: Washington, which entered the game ranked 11th in Pac-12 free throw percentage, made 20 of 28 in the second half (24 of 35 for the game), including eight of 10 in the final minute, to hold off Oregon State. The final-minute free throw flurry included two by freshman Desmond Simmons with 21.5 seconds left to put UW ahead 72-68. Portland native Terrence Ross came up large with 21 points, including five of UW’s final 10, and 13 rebounds. C.J. Wilcox had 17 points off the bench, and Tony Wroten had 12.
For the 14th time overall, and for the 10th consecutive year, the Pac-12 will hold a postseason tournament to determine the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The schedule:
|Game #||Time||Seeds / Opponents|
|01||12 p.m.||No. 8 WSU (15-15, 7-11) vs. No. 9 Oregon St. (17-13, 7-11)|
|02||2:30 p.m.||No. 5 UCLA (18-13) vs. No. 12 USC (6-25, 1-17)|
|03||6 p.m.||No. 7 Stanford (19-10, 9-8) vs. No. 10 ASU (9-20, 6-12)|
|04||8:30 p.m.||No. 6 Colorado (19-11, 11-7) vs. No. 11 Utah (6-25, 3-15)|
|Game #||Time||Seeds / Opponents|
|05||12 p.m.||Game 1 Winner vs. No. 1 Washington (21-9, 14-4)|
|06||2:30 p.m.||Game 2 Winner vs. No. 4 Arizona (21-10, 12-6)|
|07||6 p.m.||Game 3 Winner vs. No. 2 California (23-8, 13-5)|
|08||8:30 p.m.||Game 4 Winner vs. No. 3 Oregon (22-8, 13-5)|
|9||6 p.m.||Game 5 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner|
|10||8:30 p.m.||Game 7 Winner vs. Game 8 Winner|
|11||3 p.m.||Pac-12 Championship|
UW Tournament Record vs. Foes In Tournament
Since the first conference tournament in 1987, Washington is 16-10, with titles in 2005, 2010 and 2011. Only Arizona (19) has more tournament victories and league titles (4) than the Huskies.
|Arizona||3||0||1.000||2011 Final||UW 77-75 (OT)|
|Stanford||4||1||.800||2010 Semifinal||UW 79-64|
|Arizona St.||3||2||.600||2009 Semifinal||ASU 75-65|
|Oregon||2||2||.500||2011 Semifinal||UW 69-51|
|California||1||1||.500||2010 Final||UW 79-75|
|Oregon St.||1||1||.500||2010 Quarter||UW 59-52|
|WSU||1||1||.500||2011 Quarter||UW 89-87|
|UCLA||1||2||.333||2004 Quarter||W 91-83|
|Total||16||10||0.615||3 overall titles|