For most of what ended up being a very successful season overall, Washington relied heavily on a defense that made opponents work overtime to get their points. That wasn’t the case on Monday, causing the Huskies’ season to come to an end.
Washington fell 85-81 at Saint Mary’s in the second round of the NIT, nearly rallying from a 16-point deficit in the third quarter. The fifth-seeded Huskies (21-13) within three points several times in the final five minutes, including at 82-79 following freshman Jaylen Nowell’s three-pointer with 37 seconds left, but their defense couldn’t get a stop.
The Huskies allowed No. 1 Saint Mary’s to shoot 56.4 percent overall and hit 9 of 15 three-pointers. They entered the season allowing 44.4 percent shooting from the field and 32.8 percent from three.
Junior Noah Dickerson led Washington with 22 points (on 8-of-11 shooting) and 9 rebounds while junior Matisse Thybulle had 13 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals and and 3 blocks. The 4 steals gave him 101 for the season, second-most in Pac-12 history.
Despite the loss, Washington far exceeded expectations under first-year coach Mike Hopkins. It more than doubled the win total from 2016-17, when the Huskies were 9-22, and their 10-8 record in conference play was way up from 2-16 last season.
Thank you for growing with us.
— Washington Men's Basketball (@UW_MBB) March 20, 2018
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