UW women’s basketball blown out by Oregon State, 77-57
Huskies have four-game winning streak snapped while Beavers win seven straight for the first time since 1998.
Seattle Times staff reporter
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Kelsey Plum smacked her hands in frustration then looked at the Alaska Airlines Arena video board in the second half of Washington’s game against Oregon State.
Things were as bad as it seemed.
Plum was shooting 20 percent from the field while OSU banked countless three-pointers and circus shots over Washington’s defense to build a 25-point lead early in the second half. The Beavers ended up winning 77-57 on Sunday, sweeping the Huskies in the season series for the first time since 2009.
Oregon State (19-9, 11-5 Pac-12) is on a seven-game winning streak for the first time since 1998 while ending UW’s four-game winning streak.
“They’re maybe the hottest team on the West Coast,” UW coach Mike Neighbors said. “We were running some defenses we hadn’t run since the first part of the season because they were just in a flow, a rhythm. ... We got outplayed, out-coached, out-prepared, out-everything.”
The Pac-12’s second-best three-point shooting team, Oregon State played to its strength in dismantling Washington. OSU was 7 for 14 from three-point range in the first half to build a 42-25 lead headed into the break.
The Beavers also had no problem breaking through the Huskies’ zone defense to get midrange shots. Up 19-17, OSU center Ruth Hamblin knocked in a short jumper to start a 12-0 run that put her team up 31-18.
Washington (16-11, 9-7) worked to find shots, but watched its shooting percentage drop from 66.7 percent the first five minutes of the game to 26.5 at the break. Plum, who had a career-best 38 points in a win against Oregon on Friday, was 2 for 8 to start the game. Afterward, Neighbors said she had a stomach virus and was throwing up Sunday morning.
The Huskies’ deficit only grew after the break. Plum finished with a game-high 26 points (7 for 19) and Davis added 18 points. Senior guard Mercedes Wetmore, who played her final regular-season game at home, was scoreless for the first time since UW’s home opener against Portland.
Five OSU players finished scoring in double figures led by Hamblin’s 18 points and 14 rebounds.
“This wasn’t the storybook ending,” Wetmore said. “But I’m honestly really happy. We still have two games left and if we get one of those big ones, our dreams can still happen for the season.”
Sunday was pivotal between two teams with an outside chance at nabbing an NCAA tournament berth. Oregon State entered the game with an RPI rating of 37 while Washington is ranked 78th.
OSU is pegged to be a No. 11 seed in ESPN’s latest Bracketology this week, which would be its first NCAA berth since 1996. OSU is tied with No. 20 Arizona State for third in the Pac-12 standings with a homestand against the Arizona schools as its final two regular-season games.
UW concludes its season with a road swing against the Bay Area schools. Tied with USC for fifth in the Pac-12 standings, UW needs an upset and a strong run in the conference tournament in hopes of getting an NCAA tournament berth, which would be its first since 2007.
“There’s still a lot to play for,” Neighbors said. “But I smashed this (game tape) in the locker room. There’s nothing good for us to learn from any of that ... except they (OSU) played great.”
• Jamie Weisner (Clarkston High) did not play due to a right hand injury.
Jayda Evans: 206-464-2067 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @JaydaEvans.