Richard Solomon made a free throw with 7:18 left in the first half to tie the game at 18. Unfortunately for the Golden Bears (9-6, 1-2 Pac-12), that was the last time they looked like they had a chance to win. Washington closed out the half on a 17-2 run, including 16 straight points, and the Huskies (10-5, 2-0) never looked back.
C.J. Wilcox led the way for the Huskies with 19 points, outshining his Cal counterpart Allen Crabbe (nine points) in a highly-anticipated matchup between two of the Pac-12′s top-five scorers. Crabbe was bothered the whole night, never finding a rhythm. Of course, this was true for his teammates as well – forward David Kravish was the only Bear in double figures with 14 points.
In front of their home crowd, the Cal squad could not matchup on the inside, having trouble on both ends of the floor with Washington’s big center Aziz N’Diaye, who had his sixth double-double of the young season, scoring 12 points and grabbing 12 of his team’s 43 rebounds. The Bears finished the night with 28 boards.
With just over nine minutes to play, Solomon, who finished the night with seven points, posted up the seven-foot N’Diaye, spun, and exploded towards the basket to finish with a dunk. His effort briefly reignited Haas Pavilion, bringing Cal within 12; but, the Huskies answered right back with a Desmond Simmons jumper. It was the story of the second half.
Montgomery’s team could not defend, allowing again and again the Huskies to counter every time they managed to score. Washington was playing fluidly on the offensive side, consistently moving the ball and never becoming stagnant. In the rare even that the Bears did get a stop, they either gave up an offensive rebound or turned it over on the way back to their end of the court.
At least Bill Walton was enjoying himself. When the game was out of reach, he began recanting stories of his past while gushing about the University of California system and the city of Berkeley. However, he said it best with 6:20 left in the game when freshman Tyrone Wallace was at the line: “I expected to see more from Cal.” Me too, Bill. Me too.
Topics: Allen Crabbe, Aziz N'Diaye, Bill Walton, C.J. Wilcox, Cal Bears, Cal Bears Basketball, California Bears Basketball, California Golden Bears Basketball, David Kravish, Haas Pavilion, Mike Montgomery, NCAA, Pac-12 Basketball, Washington Huskies Basketball