Washington Men’s Basketball Outlasts Utah Tech 78-67

For a lot of Monday evening this recreation appeared like a carbon copy of Friday in opposition to North Florida. The Huskies obtained out to a good begin, went ice chilly halfway via the first half, finally discovered their rhythm, and accelerated down the stretch. A scorching 60% 3-pt capturing evening and an environment friendly 26 factors from burgeoning true freshman star Keyon Menifield Jr. propelled the Huskies to a 78-67 over Utah Tech (previously Dixie State). The win strikes Washington to 3-0 on the season whereas Tech falls to 1-2.

Utah Tech’s middle Tanner Christensen began the sport in dominant vogue. He drew two early fouls in opposition to beginning UW middle Braxton Meah, making 3/4 on the line. He additionally swished a 3-pointer regardless of being 1/5 profession from deep coming into the sport. He had UTU’s first 8 factors. PJ Fuller countered with 5 early factors regardless of two fast turnovers as properly. Franck Kepnang dribbled out of a double workforce and dunked it to provide UW their first lead at 9-8.

The foul troubles continued unabated. Koren Johnson got here in and was referred to as for 2 perimeter contact fouls inside a span of 4 seconds and sat again down. Franck Kepnang picked up his 2nd on an over the again (though Utah Tech airballed the ensuing entrance finish of a 1-and-1). Meah got here again in and picked up his third foul 8 seconds later which means Utah Tech was within the double bonus for the ultimate 12 minutes of the primary half.

Still, Washington held a lead by advantage of some uncharacteristic 3-point capturing. Jamal Bey handed up an open shot to seek out Cole Bajema within the nook who hit his second outdoors shot of the sport.

Langston Wilson was pressured to return in at middle because of the in depth inside foul bother. Christensen simply pivoted round him for a layup to chop it to a 17-16 UW lead prompting a Hopkins timeout. On the subsequent defensive possession although Christensen did the identical factor to provide Utah Tech the lead. The run continued as Tech discovered an open nook 3 after which obtained it down low to Christensen for one more basket and one other Hopkins timeout. The 9-0 Trailblazers outscored them up 23-17 with 8:08 within the half.

Menifield lastly ended what turned an 11-0 run after getting a brief floater to drop. Before he did although Tyler Linhardt got here right into a recreation for the primary time this season because it appears he’ll not redshirt with UW’s depth points. Washington was pressured into taking part in a 3 true freshman lineup whereas trailing by as many as 9. Utah Tech got here into the sport as a poor 3-point capturing workforce however made 5 of their first 8 from deep to not solely maintain UW at bay however prolong their lead.

The freshman guards began to bail out a moribund offense within the last jiffy of the half. Both Koren Johnson and Keyon Menifield hit a 3 and a floater in a 2-minute span. Washington’s protection could not fairly get sufficient stops for it to be sufficient to retake the lead. But it allowed UW to enter the half down 36-34 and on a 15-8 run. Menifield led Washington in scoring on the break with 11 whereas Tech’s Christensen had 16 factors.

As might be anticipated, the foul state of affairs evened out in UW’s favor. The Huskies had a 3-0 benefit on the media timeout with 13:41 remaining. However they trailed by one regardless of Menifield remaining scorching with 7 fast factors. Cole Bajema missed an open nook 3 that might’ve put UW up 5 and Utah Tech answered with a fast 3 to instantly put the Dawgs behind 47-46.

Once once more Christensen utterly took over the sport. He scored 6 factors in 90 seconds and Hop took a disgusted timeout with UW trailing by 6. With no methods left to attempt the Huskies for the primary time this 12 months went to a twin towers lineup taking part in Meah and Kepnang collectively. It appeared good at first as Meah caught an alley-oop and Bajema hit a transition 3 to chop inside one. Kepnang could not fairly assist in time and blocked a Christensen shot after it hit the backboard to finish the mini-run.

Despite the dearth of spacing the Huskies proceed their scorching streak from deep. PJ Fuller was open behind the arc after a scramble for the ball and knocked it down. Then Jamal Bey discovered sufficient house to can a 3. Finally Washington obtained out and ran off a miss and Menifield discovered Meah streaking downcourt for a transition dunk that put UW up 61-58. Washington lastly had a foul referred to as on them with 7:44 left within the 2nd half sending issues to a media timeout. It ended up being the longest timeout of our lives as a damaged shot clock on the ground delayed issues for at the least 25 minutes forcing each groups to undergo heat ups once more.

Coming out of the large break, Washington’s offense stored up its momentum. Keyon Menifield hit a step again 3 to place the Dawgs up 6. After a Utah Tech bucket late within the shot clock, Meah answered with a lob dunk and-1 and made his first free throw try as a Husky. Christensen missed a pair of free throws following Kepnang’s 4th foul however Meah did it once more with one other and-1 lob dunk (this time with a missed free throw). Washington’s 69-60 lead was lower into after Utah Tech accomplished an quaint 3-pt play of their very own. American. PJ Fuller stored it from getting even nearer after a Meah miss with a transition block that resulted in getting UW again the ball up by 6.

Menifield took on the position of nearer with aplomb for a couple of minutes as he hit a buzzer beating 3-pointer and on the subsequent possession knocked in a pair of free throws. That was sufficient to seal it for Washington as Utah Tech went practically 3 minutes of the clock with no basket earlier than a rating within the last 30 seconds because the Huskies received 78-67.

Who is aware of the place Washington could be (that was figurative, they’d be within the cellar) with out true freshman Keyon Menifield Jr.? Despite seemingly tweaking his leg within the last minute he completed with a game-high tying 26 factors on 4/6 3-pt capturing. Cole Bajema stepped up for the Dawgs with 16 factors on 3/5 capturing from deep plus made all 3 free throws when fouled on one other deep try.

Washington shot 60% from 3-point vary general which was solely the third time they’ve performed that within the Mike Hopkins period. The offense appeared a lot smoother within the second half because the Huskies had 11 assists in opposition to 4 turnovers in comparison with 3 assists and seven turnovers within the first interval. The issues of rebounding within the zone lastly obtained to Washington on this one as they misplaced the battle of the boards 38-25 however nonetheless managed to win as a consequence of their scorching 63/70/69% FG/3pt/FT capturing splits within the 2nd half

The Dawgs return to the courtroom on Thursday evening internet hosting Cal Baptist at 8 p on Pac-12 Washington. We’ll see in the event that they’re in a position to get Keion Brooks Jr. again from damage and hopefully can have everybody who performed tonight wholesome in addition to they can not afford any extra lacking gamers whereas the competitors begins to ramp up.

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