PULLMAN – Washington State’s Jazmine Perkins was adamant that the streak doesn’t matter, and Washington players agreed.
But it’s hard to ignore the Huskies’ dominance over their in-state rival – a stretch that now spans 32 consecutive wins after UW’s 65-48 romp over WSU in a Pac-10 women’s basketball contest Saturday at Beasley Coliseum.
Washington State (8-20, 6-10) last beat the Huskies in February 1995, two seasons before current WSU coach June Daugherty started her 11-year tenure at UW.
The latest loss, witnessed by 1,147 on a frigid evening on the Palouse, was headlined by a dominant final 13 minutes for the Huskies (11-14, 6-10).
The Cougars cut UW’s lead to 37-32 with two free throws from Perkins after a double technical was assessed on Perkins and Washington’s Charmaine Barlow. But the Huskies answered with a 17-5 run over the next six minutes.
WSU never threatened again.
“Gosh, our shooting and our offensive execution was about as cold as it was outside this weekend,” Daugherty said.
Washington State shot 29.5 percent from the field and 43 percent (7 of 16) from the foul line. Meanwhile, the Huskies had their way down low, outscoring WSU 36-14 in the paint.
The brunt of the damage was done by Washington’s two 6-foot-3 posts – Mackenzie Argens (18 points, six rebounds) and Regina Rogers (13 points, six rebounds, and two blocks).
“It felt wonderful,” said Washington coach Tia Jackson, who had stressed the importance of the inside game this week to her players. “They’re confident kids, and the more touches they get, the more comfortable they become.”
Washington pulled away in the second half despite leading scorer Kristi Kingma’s season-low five points. She scorched WSU in the first meeting of the season for 29 points.
“It wasn’t really about Kingma,” Perkins said when asked if she was surprised by the result with the UW guard’s subpar offensive showing. “We just didn’t show up like we needed to show up tonight.”
After the game, Daugherty and Washington senior Sarah Morton shared a long embrace. Morton, UW’s only senior, was recruited to the Huskies by Daugherty along with Argens before the coach was fired and moved across the state.
WSU honored its only two seniors, Katie Madison and Katie Calderwood, with a brief pregame ceremony. Madison, a transfer from Idaho, started for the just the 12th time this season and immediately provided a spark with a 3-pointer.
But five minutes into the game, the Cougars’ offense went into a funk. WSU clanked eight straight shots over a 6-minute stretch, and Washington capitalized with a 16-0 spurt to take command.
“We had a great week of practice and we certainly would have loved to play better for our seniors and our last home game of the season,” Daugherty said. “… But that’s the thing that’s most disappointing is that we didn’t feel like we played well for our crowd and our seniors.”