Tide Roll past UW to Tourney Title

Nov. 27, 2004

Final Stats | Notes

SEATTLE - Marverly Nettles scored 19 points and added eight rebounds Saturday, leading Alabama to an 76-56 win over Washington in the championship game of the Seattle Times Husky Classic at Bank of America Arena.

Nettles, who scored 27 points combined in Alabama's two wins in the tourney, was named the tournament MVP, while junior Kristen O'Neill led two Huskies on the All-Tournament Team. O'Neill and Husky sophomore Cheri Craddock were both named to the five-player team, which also included Alabama's Natasha Gamble, Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Teri Huff and Columbia's Erin Jaschik.

Washington (3-2) is 29-7 all-time in the Seattle Times Classic, with wins in 11 of 18 championship games all-time, including two in a row before Saturday. The 20-point loss equaled the largest margin of defeat for the Huskies in tournament history, matched only by a 70-50 loss to Louisiana Tech in the 1987 title game.

The Tide (4-0) jumped on Washington early, taking a six-point lead in the first five minutes before a 10-0 UW run put the Huskies up, 14-10, midway through the period. Alabama, however, took the lead back just two minutes later and extended it to nine, at 37-28 with an 8-2 run in a three-minute stretch late in the half.

Washington appeared to take back the momentum in the closing seconds of the half, with sophomore Maggie O'Hara scoring on a turnaround jumper in the lane with 28 seconds remaining, and O'Neill making a steal at midcourt and a dish to freshman Emily Florence for a buzzer-beating layin to cut the Tide advantage to 37-32 at the intermission.

That momentum, however, was short-lived, as Alabama opened the second half on a 8-2 run to increase its lead to 11, before burying the Huskies with a 9-0 run midway through the half to take a 64-42 advantage.

Alabama built its runs on the strength of a plus-26 advantage in rebounding and 21 second-chance points. The Tide's 15 offensive boards equaled Washington's 15 defensive rebounds, while their 49 total rebounds more than doubled the Huskies' 23-board total.

'It was uncharacteristic for us to have only eight offensive boards,' said ninth-year head coach June Daugherty following the loss. 'We have to get more intensity and get more people to the glass. Tonight, we didn't have it, especially in the second half.'

Wisconsin-Milwaukee (1-3), defeated 86-75 by Washington in Friday's opening round, held off a late charge by Columbia (2-2) for a 63-59 victory in Saturday's third-place game. Alabama defeated Columbia, 81-45, on Friday to advance to Saturday's title game with Washington.

The Huskies hit the road for three in a row, beginning with a Dec. 4 matchup at Utah and continuing with games at Denver and Notre Dame.