After finally getting their conference schedule started, the Beavers managed to pick up their biggest win of the season Monday night, taking down a Colorado squad that has been very tough this season. After being forced to postpone their game against Washington State, the Beavers will return to action Sunday afternoon, traveling to Seattle to take on the Washington Huskies. Here’s a quick run down on their next opponent.
- Record (Conference): 5-5 (0-2)
- Ranking: Not Ranked in AP or Coaches Poll, 105 in NET
- Head Coach: Tina Langley (1st Season)
- Top Scorer: Haley Van Dyke (12.4 PPG)
- Points Per Game: 57.7 (292nd overall)
- Opponent Points Per Game: 59.1 (85th overall)
- Last Game/Streak: 68-61 L vs Oregon, 3 losses in a row.
After a disappointing, but expected, 11th place finish for Washington in last season’s Pac-12 standings, the Huskies decided it was time to make changes. Head coach Jody Lynn was out, and Rice’s Tina Langley stepped in to try to turn the Huskies fortunes around.
She had he work cut out for her. The team lost three starters to the transfer portal, but retained All Pac-12 forward Haley Van Dyke, who remains the team’s leading scorer and rebounder. Langley also managed to convince center Nancy Mulkey to join her in moving from Rice to Washington, giving the Huskies a pretty solid looking frontcourt core.
That frontcourt should set up an interesting matchup with Oregon State’s Kennedy Brown and Taya Corosdale. Oregon State is second in the country in team blocks per game, Mulkey is fifth in the nation in individual blocks per game. It should be a tough, physical game under the rim.
Defense has been the Huskies strong side so far this season. Washington has allowed a solid 57.7 points per game. So far that defense hasn’t held up well against Pac-12 competition with USC putting up 73 points and Oregon 68 points, two of the worst marks the Huskies have seen this season.
If the defense starts slipping as the Huskies start facing tougher opponents, things could get rough quickly, as Washington has one of the worst offenses among major conference schools. One of the most interesting areas to watch is going to be three point shooting. That’s an area the Huskies are particularly week in, averaging less than 5 threes per game, but Washington is also a team that doesn’t allow a ton of threes. If the Beavers can win the battle at the perimeter, its going to be hard for Washington to keep pace with OSU’s scoring.
Washington has some good players in place, but this is still a team that seems a ways away from being competitive in an extremely tough Pac-12 Conference. While the Beavers may still be missing Taylor Jones in the frontcourt, their forwards should be able to match up well against Washington’s best performers, and Oregon State’s guard unit is going to be one of the most dangerous the Huskies have faced this season. I don’t believe Washington is up to the task just yet, and I’m taking the Beavers at around 68-59.
- Date: Sunday, January 23rd
- Time: 12:00 PM PT
- Location: Alaska Airlines Arena - Seattle, WA
- Broadcast: Pac-12 Oregon