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UW Basketball Final: Huskies Fall 87-86 At Arizona Despite Excellent Second Half

Washington Huskies forward Matthew Bryan-Amaning had an outstanding second half.

After being rattled by the Arizona Wildcats’ double-teaming defense in the first half, he came back with a renewed vigor and played much more confidently on the block to score 18 points in the second half. He finished with 24 points, nine rebounds, and six blocks.

And yet getting whistled for a travel after shuffling his feet on the block with three seconds left in the game is probably the play that will stand out most about his performance in their 87-86 loss.

Of course, the outcome of a game is never about one play and spotting the Wildcats 10 points to start the game still looms large in this result.

However after digging themselves out of that early hole, the Washington Huskies’ second half performance at Arizona was actually outstanding. They shot 55.3 percent from the field, only committed four turnovers while forcing Arizona into 12, and their rebounding couldn’t have been much worse than it was in the first half.

The problem for UW is that Arizona remained aggressive, going to the basket to overcome their sloppiness. And offensive rebounds that led to second-chance scoring opportunities throughout the game were a significant reason why the Huskies lost.

Leading the way for Arizona, of course, was Derrick Williams who had an unreal game-saving block on Darnell Gant in the paint with under a second left to seal the win in spectacular fashion. Williams finished with yet another double-double with 26 points, 11 rebounds, including tying for a game-him with four offensive rebounds.

Isaiah Thomas was also a key figure in the game, finishing one assist short of a double-double with 12 points and nine assists and helping the Huskies find that offensive rhythm in the second half.