Huskies Prepared For Exhibition Opener

Nov. 5, 2009

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SEATTLE -- The Washington women's basketball team kicks off the 2009-10 season with an exhibition matchup against cross-town neighbors Seattle Pacific University at Bank of America Arena on Thursday night.

The Huskies return the bulk of their lineup from last year, and are eager to get back on the court for the first time in the new season against the Division II Falcons.

'We're excited about these exhibition games,' Washington coach Tia Jackson said. 'We could be playing a high school team and it wouldn't matter. We just want to play together, get out there and start the season off.'

The starting lineup for the 7 p.m. tipoff includes junior guard Sarah Morton, senior guard Sara Mosiman, senior guard Sami Whitcomb and sophomore guard Kristi Kingma, and features the Husky debut of sophomore center Regina Rogers, who sat out last season due to NCAA rules following her 2007 transfer from UCLA.

They'll be facing off against an experienced Falcons team that is coming off a 23-5 season and a split of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference championship. They also earned their second straight berth in the NCAA Division II West Region title game.

Seattle Pacific, which is ranked No. 16 in the USA Today/ESPN Division II preseason poll, should prove a good early test to see how this season's experienced Husky squad will respond after an offseason of strenuous practices and vigorous conditioning. The Falcons are led by coach Julie van Beek and senior Daesha Henderson of Snohomish, a first-team all-GNAC selection last year.

The two teams haven't played since 2007, when SPU claimed a 75-67 win over the Huskies at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. But Washington leads the all-time series 8-3 in regular season play.

The Huskies will use this, the first of two exhibitions, as a final warmup for the much-anticipated regular season. They also play Corbin College of the NAIA on Monday, Nov. 9, at Bank of America Arena, before officially starting the season on Nov. 14 at Portland State.

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