By Scott M. Johnson Herald Writer
SEATTLE — Four years of never-ending practices can get pretty grating to a college basketball player.
It’s safe to say the four healthy seniors on the University of Washington women’s basketball team were happy to be there Tuesday afternoon.
The Huskies, whose season could have ended with a loss to Stanford in the Pacific-12 Conference tournament last week, were back on the practice court and excited about tonight’s first-round game in the Women’s National Invitational Tournament. UW (17-13) will play host to Cal Poly at 7 p.m.
“It means a lot,” senior Mollie Williams said before Tuesday’s afternoon practice. “It shows all the hard work we’ve done is finally paying off.”
For Williams and the Huskies’ other three healthy seniors, tonight’s game has been a long time coming. Their only other postseason appearance, outside of the annual come-one-come-all Pac-12 tournament, came in something called the Women’s Basketball Invitational in 2010. UW lost that game, 59-58 to Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, and is hoping to earn its first victory in a national postseason tournament since March 2006 tonight.
No matter what happens tonight, the UW seniors got to extend their season for at least one game.
“I’m very happy,” Williams said. “I’m glad that, as a senior, I get to end the season the right way.”