Huskies Knock off LMU, 79-52, for Fifth-Straight Win

SEATTLE (AP) _ The Washington Huskies earned a spot in the title game of the Seattle Times Classic with a 79-52 victory over the Lions of Loyola Marymount on Thursday night.

Washington (6-2) has won five straight and is off to its best start since opening the 1997-98 season 10-0.

Megan Franza got the Huskies out of the gates quickly, scoring nine points in the first 4:18 of action to stake a 18-4 lead. Washington continued to roll and increased its lead to 20 points at 38-18 after back-to-back 3-pointers by sisters Giuliana and Gioconda Mendiola with 7:10 remaining in the first half.

The Huskies led 47-29 at halftime largely because they held the Lions to 27-percent shooting. Loyola Marymount shot 45 percent in its first seven games of the season.

In the first half, Giuliana Mendiola had 15 points on 6-of-7 shooting from the field. She wound up with a career-high 20. Franza finished with 13 points and has scored in double-figures in 34 of her last 38 games dating back to last season. LeAnn Sheets scored 11.

Kate Murray scored 10 points for Loyola Marymount (4-4) but left the game with a sprained right ankle with 14:28 remaining. She did not return. Taryn Reynolds entered the game averaging a team-leading 15.9 points per game, but Washington's tight defense held her to six points. She missed all eight field goal attempts. Bryn Britton had 10 points.

Washington has played host to the Seattle Times Classic 14 times, winning seven tournament titles. It will play James Madison Friday night for the championship at 8 p.m., while Loyola Marymount and Western Michigan face off in the consolation game at 6 p.m..

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