March 13, 2009 in Sports

UW continues march to madness

Huskies continue late-season dominance
Beth Harris Associated Press
Associated Press photo

Venoy Overton and UW are No. 1 in the Pac-10 so far, with ASU up next.
(Full-size photo)

Pac-10 tournament

Arizona State 68, Arizona 56

 Pac-10 player of the year James Harden had 27 points and eight rebounds, and the No. 23 Sun Devils (23-8) defeated the Wildcats (19-13), putting Arizona’s long NCAA tournament streak in jeopardy.

 Arizona has appeared in 24 straight NCAA tournaments, the longest active streak and second-longest behind the 27-year streak by North Carolina from 1975-2001.

USC 79, California 75

 Taj Gibson had 21 points and 16 rebounds, Daniel Hackett made four free throws in the last 3.8 seconds, and the sixth-seeded Trojans (19-12) never trailed in beating the No. 3 Golden Bears (22-10).

LOS ANGELES – Washington picked a great time to continue its second-longest winning streak of the season.

Jon Brockman scored 20 points, Isaiah Thomas sparked a decisive second-half spurt with nine points and the 13th-ranked Huskies defeated Stanford 85-73 in the Pac-10 men’s basketball tournament quarterfinals Thursday.

Thomas finished with 14 points and a career-high nine rebounds.

Washington (25-7), winners of six in a row, will play 23rd-ranked Arizona State (23-8) at 6 p.m. in today’s semifinals at the Staples Center.

The Huskies swept the regular-season series, winning the second game by three points in overtime.

“Another tough opponent,” Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar said. “Arizona State just plays us to the wire. We’re going to have to do a great job of turning the page. This group has been fantastic in keeping the focus.”

Washington’s focus is on earning a high seed in the NCAA tournament, where it hasn’t played since 2006 when its streak of three consecutive appearances ended.

Anthony Goods scored 26 points for the Cardinal, who were sent packing a year after losing to UCLA in the title game.

“It’s just frustrating to fall short,” Goods said.

Washington, the tournament’s top seed for the first time, has won nine of its last 10. The Huskies completed a three-game sweep of the Cardinal (18-13) by winning the teams’ first meeting in the tournament since 2005.

Landry Fields had 16 points and a career-high 15 rebounds and freshman Jeremy Green added 13 points for Stanford, which fell to 11-11 all time in the tournament. Those two, along with Goods, combined for 55 of Stanford’s points, while starter Lawrence Hill finished with four points on 2-of-14 shooting.

The Cardinal cut their deficit to five points four times down the stretch, twice on baskets by Goods and twice by Green. But Washington always answered, and scored 12 in a row to pull away.

Stanford was just 8 of 28 from long range.

“It just came down to shot selection,” Goods said. “We resorted to the 3 a little too early and it took its toll on us.”

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