Washington Tramples California, 106-73
March 4, 2005
By JANIE McCAULEY
AP Sports Writer
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) - Bobby Jones scored 22 points and No. 10 Washingtonmade a school-record 16 3-pointers to beat California 106-73 on Thursday nightand move within one victory of at least a share of its first Pac-10 title in 20years.
Jones was 5-of-6 from long range and the Huskies surpassed the previousschool record of 14 set Jan. 29, 1998, at Southern California. It's the most3-pointers made in the conference this season, and UCLA is the only team to hit14.
Nate Robinson added 21 points with five 3s, and Tre Simmons had 20 pointswith four 3s, four rebounds and three assists for the Huskies (24-4, 14-3Pac-10), who will earn at least a share of their first Pac-10 title since tyingwith USC in 1985 with a win at Stanford on Saturday.
Will Conroy, who already had set the Washington single-season assistsrecord, broke Chester Dorsey's school career assists mark of 466 set from1974-77. Conroy finished with a career-high tying 13 assists, giving him 179for the season and 475 for his career.
The Huskies made 11 of 17 3-pointers before halftime to build a big lead andshot 51.3 percent from the field for the game - 55.2 percent from 3-pointrange. With Washington ahead 70-45 in the second half, fans could be heardyelling for Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar to pull off his full-court press.
Rod Benson had 17 points and nine rebounds and Ayinde Ubaka matched hiscareer high with 13 points to lead Cal (12-15, 5-12), which lost its sixthstraight game and seventh in eight. The Bears entered Thursday's game tied foreighth place with Oregon and still hoping to advance into next weekend's Pac-10tournament in Los Angeles by finishing in the top eight.
Washington's 24 wins match its most since the 1984 team finished 24-7 andshared the Pac-10 title with Oregon State on the way to the NCAA tournament'sround of 16.
The Huskies also have their most conference wins since the '84 team won 15.Washington could match that by beating the Cardinal at Maples Pavilion, wherethey have lost their last 11. Washington hasn't swept its annual Bay Area tripsince the '84-85 season.
Washington and idle Arizona are tied atop the standings. They split theirseason series, so if they share the conference title, the tiebreaker will gothe team with a better record against the third-place team.
The last time Washington won the conference outright was in 1953 when theHuskies won the former Pacific Coast Conference and went on to the school'sonly Final Four.
Simmons' 3 with 11:38 left in the first half started a stretch whereWashington got six of seven baskets from long range. Simmons hit three straightshots - two 3s - then Robinson made three in a row from NBA 3-point territory.Jones followed with a 3 of his own, capping a 20-7 spurt that turned a 21-17advantage into a 38-24 lead.
Washington began another 10-0 run moments later that featured two more 3sand gave the Huskies a 50-29 advantage.
After that, Cal seemed to lose some of its confidence and composure. TheHuskies led 55-36 at halftime.