Husky Women Hold On for 86-75 Win

Nov. 26, 2004

Box Score

SEATTLE - Kristen O'Neill scored 14 points and Cheri Craddock added 14 off the bench as Washington held off a late charge from Wisconsin-Milwaukee for an 86-75 win in the first round of the Seattle Times Husky Classic at Bank of America Arena.

After opening a 38-22 lead at the half, Washington (3-1) needed a late run to hold off the suddenly hot-shooting Panthers, who hit 17 of 24 second-half field-goal attempts (.708) after making just nine baskets on 26 first-half attempts (.346).

The Huskies' lead, as large as 20 points early in the second half, was cut to five, at 71-66, with just under five minutes to play. Molly O'Brien led the scoring binge for Wisconsin-Milwaukee (0-3) with nine points during a 19-6 Panthers run midway through the half, while Teri Huff added 15 second-half points to finish with a game-high 21 for UWM.

Baskets on both ends put the score at 73-68 with 4:26 to play, but Washington scored seven points in the next 1:30, including two from reserve guard Nicole Castro and three from Craddock, to put the game out of reach.

In all, Husky reserves accounted for nearly half of the team's points, scoring 39 opposite the starters' 47. Washington's starters have outscored the bench by just over five points per game in 2004-05, while Craddock - who has started just one of the team's first four games - is tied for the team scoring lead at 9.3 points per game.

'We got great things out of a lot of players in that locker room tonight,' said ninth-year head coach June Daugherty.'

The Huskies built an early 13-7 lead upon seven quick points from forward Breanne Watson, before the Panthers clawed back to within one, at 16-15, with 8:56 to play. Washington, however, turned up the defensive pressure to mount a 22-7 run to close the half, including five points in the final minute of play. Craddock scored 11 of her game-high 14 points during the run, with Washington scoring 14 points total off 15 UW-Milwaukee first-half turnovers.

Washington improved to 18-0 in first-round games all-time in the tournament, which it has hosted each year since 1986. The Huskies will play Alabama in the tournament title game Saturday at 3 p.m., with Wisconsin-Milwaukee to face Columbia in the consolation game at 12:30 p.m. The Crimson Tide defeated Columbia, 81-45, in the tourney opener Friday.

Washington has won the last two Seattle Times Husky Classics, and boasts 11 titles in the tournament's 17 years of existence.