In a surprising trip to Arizona, Washington recovered some of its hoops dignity. In the Pac-12 home opener Wednesday, Utah brings in a 12-2 record.
GAME: Utah (12-2 overall, 1-1 Pac-12) at Washington (9-6 overall, 1-1 Pac-12). WHEN: Wednesday, 8 p.m., Alaska Airlines Arena. TYPE: Conference. MEETING: 14th (UW leads 7-6). RANKINGS: Neither school ranked. COACHES: Larry Krystkowiak, Utah; Lorenzo Romar, Washington; TV: Pac-12 Networks. RADIO: KJR 950 AM
After stumbling through a tepid (8-5) non-conference schedule that included no quality wins and two or three pratfalls, the Washington Huskies executed a reversal of form when they launched Pac-12 play the past weekend in Arizona. Playing its best game, Washington upended Arizona State 76-65, and then stayed with No. 1 Arizona for 37 minutes before losing 71-62.
The Huskies Pac-12 home opener is against a Utah team that started fast, and a year ago defeated Washington emphatically in the building.
“We have a lot of respect for this team,” coach Lorenzo Romar said of the Utes. “They came into our building last year and earned that respect.”
Utah has won by a double-digit margin 11 times, although that’s somewhat deceiving. The Utes have fattened their record and stats against the likes of Evergreen State (128-44), Grand Canyon (79-54) and St. Katherine (124-51) while their two losses were administered at Boise State (69-67) and to Oregon (70-68) in Salt Lake City.
Still ranked 12th in conference stats, Washington played much better defensively in Arizona, but Utah’s numbers are gaudy: 53.2 shooting percentage while holding opponents to 37.9, and a 9.5 average edge in rebounding. Utah scores 85.5 points per game and allows 61.2.
Jordan Loveridge leads the Utes with a 17.0 average while Delon Wright contributes 14.8 and Brandon Taylor 11.7. Loveridge tops the Utes in rebounding at 8.7.
Utah is coming off an 80-69 win over Oregon State. Taylor scored 23 points on 7-for-9 shooting and dished out eight assists. Wright added 14 points and six assists.
After the Arizona trip, Washington’s RPI rose from 180 to 127. Due largely to a soft schedule, Utah’s is 150.
SERIES: Dates to Nov. 30, 1951, when Utah won 62-61 in Salt Lake City. Bob Houbregs scored 21 points for the Huskies. In the most recent meeting, Jan. 19, 2012, Utah won 74-65 win at Alaska Airlines Arena. Andrew Andrews tallied 17 for Washington and C.J. Wilcox finished with 14.
UW STATS / NOTES
UW HEAD COACH: Lorenzo Romar (339-222 overall, 246-134 UW) is coming off a year in which the Huskies finished 18-16 and ended with a loss to Brigham Young in the National Invitation Tournament. Romar took the Huskies to the NCAA Tournament six times and won three Pac-10 Tournament titles (2005, 2010, 2011).
2012-13 Washington Regular-Season Statistics
University of Washington 2013-14 Schedule
|Date||Opponent||UW Rnk||Opp Rnk||W/L||Score||Rec.|
|11/6/13||@vs. Cent. Wash||—||—||W||95-65||0-0|
|11/10/13||vs. Seattle U.||—||—||W||88-78||1-0|
|11/14/13||vs. UC Irvine||—||—||L||86-72||1-1|
|11/17/13||vs. E. Wash||—||—||W||92-80||2-1|
|11/22/13||*vs. Boston Co||—||18||L||89-78||2-3|
|12/30/13||vs. L. Beach St.||—||—||W||92-89||4-3|
|12/8/13||vs. SD State||—||24||L||70-63||4-4|
|12/14/13||vs. Idaho St.||—||—||W||85-66||5-4|
|12/27/13||vs. Miss. Valley||—||—||W||95-80||7-5|
|3/18-19/14||NCAA 1st 4||—||—||—||—–||—|
|3/20-23/14||NCAA 2nd, 3rd||—||—||—||—–||—|
@=Exhibition; *=2K Sports Classic; ^=Pac-12 Tournament