Gaddy, Suggs combine to lift Huskies to big win
With his vision blurred after taking an incidental jab to the eye, Scott Suggs didn't get a good look at his first shot, a three-pointer...
Seattle Times staff reporter
TEMPE, Ariz. — With his vision blurred after taking an incidental jab to the eye, Scott Suggs didn't get a good look at his first shot, a three-pointer that went in to snap his four-game drought on shots behind the arc.
By the end of the game, though, he saw everything clearly.
With the Huskies clinging to a three-point lead that at one time was 13 points, Abdul Gaddy blew past an Arizona State opponent and knifed into the paint before spotting Suggs alone in the corner and delivering a perfect pass.
Suggs rose and dropped a three-pointer over the outstretched hand of ASU's Jonathan Gilling with 25 seconds left, which sealed Washington's 68-59 upset victory in men's basketball action Saturday.
"Gaddy hit me earlier in the game on the same play and as he started driving I knew he saw me in the corner," Suggs said. "I was just thinking, 'Knock it down.'
"I always feel like I'm going to make those shots. Especially late in the game."
Riding Suggs' hot-hand and Gaddy's all-around playmaking, the Huskies bounced back from a disappointing defeat at Arizona on Wednesday and walked away with a season-sweep over the Sun Devils.
"I thought Abdul was really good tonight," coach Lorenzo Romar said. "He made clutch plays down the stretch. He ran the offense.
"He took shots and shot them with authority and conviction like he expected to make those. Like there was no doubt in his mind."
Gaddy and Suggs, Washington's senior co-captains, were the X-factors in a disappointing season.
It's oddly appropriate that both would shine on the day the Huskies (15-13, 7-8 Pac-12), the defending regular-season conference champions, were officially eliminated from the league title race.
Suggs scored with 16 points, including four three-pointers while Gaddy finished with 13 points, seven assists, five rebounds and didn't commit a turnover in 32 minutes.
When asked why Suggs hasn't played like he did Saturday night for most of the season, Romar said: "But he did tonight and we'll take it."
When asked what he can take away from perhaps his finest performance of his UW career, Gaddy talked about not losing faith in himself or his team.
"Our team has always believed in itself," he said.
Normally when C.J. Wilcox, Washington's leading scorer, fails to put up big offensive numbers, the Huskies lose. Before Saturday they were 3-9 when he failed to score 18 points.
Against the Sun Devils (20-8, 9-6), Wilcox missed 10 of 11 field goals and finished with six points.
Washington overcame his off night thanks to Gaddy, Suggs and Andrew Andrews who scored 13 points.
The Huskies weren't the only team that had to compensate without their star, with Arizona State's leading scorers Jahii Carson and Carson Felix combined for just 18 points."We didn't make many errors and that was the difference in the game," Romar said. "Every player that went into the game contributed in some way and did a nice job."
Despite Wilcox missing his first six shots and going scoreless in the first half, Washington led 32-28 at the break thanks to Suggs, who had 10 points on 4-for-6 shooting.
The Huskies led by as many as 13 points at 51-38 with 11:40 left and watched their lead evaporate to one point with 3:49 remaining.
It was fitting Gaddy and Suggs made the most important plays in the final minutes for Washington because they led the way for most of the game.
"I'm just happy we got a win," Gaddy said.
Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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Attendance: 10,004. Officials: Michael Irving, Ken Ditty, Kurt Walker.