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Gritty Huskies Use Small Ball To Put Away Texas Southern

Nov 15, 2021

SEATTLE – Husky coach Mike Hopkins utilized a smaller lineup in the second half against Texas Southern on Monday night at Alaska Airlines Arena and the Huskies responded by beating the visiting Tigers, 72-65, to improve to 2-1 on the season.
Terrell Brown Jr. had 19 points and nine assists, Daejon Davis scored 15 points and PJ Fuller came off the bench to chip in 11 points, showing that Washington can be dangerous leaning on a trio of players standing 6-foot-4 or shorter.
"Down the stretch I thought in the second half our man (defense), even knowing we were small, we were gritty," Hopkins said. "I thought that was a big part of how we won was that small team. I'm really proud of those guys.
"It wasn't pretty, but we found a way to beat a very good team."
The Huskies and Tigers (0-3) went back-and forth for the first 33 minutes of the game. The biggest lead by either team was five at that point, which the visitors established in the opening minutes of the second half. Davis would hit a three-pointer to cut the lead to two and followed a minute later with another to tie the game, 41-41, at the 17:43 mark.
From there, the teams traded punched – and the lead, which switched hands a total of 17 times and featured 11 ties – until the Huskies' smaller unit provided the final spark starting at the 7:08 mark.
Trailing 56-55, Fuller hit a step-back three, igniting an 8-0 run for the Huskies. Brown followed Fuller's three-pointer with a three-point play the hard way. He hit an acrobatic shot in the paint and took a bump from Brison Greshman to earn the and-one.

The Huskies stalled on offense momentarily with the 60-56 advantage, but forward Emmitt Matthews Jr. was able to take charges on three consecutive trips down the court to help stall the Tigers' offense.
"He goes 1-for-9 after having 21 points the other night," Hopkins said of Matthews. "He had three charges in a row late in the game.
"That's a gritty guy. It's not working for him on the offensive end, I've got to do things on the defensive end. That's all about winning and heart. That's toughness."
A Matthews' free throw and a Davis' layup pushed the Huskies lead to seven, 63-56, with 4:26 to play.
It was the biggest margin yet of the night for the Huskies and they would not squander it. Texas Southern would get to as close as three points, 65-62, with 1:40 to go, but UW iced the game at the free throw line, going 4-for-4 down the stretch – they were 20-of-28 for the night after struggling in the first two games – to put away the Tigers.
Washington returns to action on Thursday, Nov. 18 against Wyoming. Tip off will be 8:00 p.m. at Alaska Airlines Arena.