Well, against a team as bad as Oregon, a second-half letdown didn’t hurt the Huskies, but it certainly wasn’t the kind of effort Lorenzo Romar and his team wanted.
“I think we were just playing just to finish out the game,” said Justin Dentmon. “We weren’t really attacking like we was in the first half. I think that gave them confidence to go down and make shots.”
The Huskies know that kind of effort won’t cut it in L.A. next week, but better opponents should bring a better 40-minute effort out of the Huskies.
There were still some positives for the Huskies in a second half in which Oregon out-scored Washington 59-54, especially the play of Jon Brockman. After scoring just five points on one of six shooting in the first half, he went five for six in the second and finished with 21 points and 18 rebounds. The 18 rebounds, 13 of which came in the second half, matches a career high for Brockman. He now has grabbed 18 rebounds four times this season and five in his career. You’d think one of these days he’d manage to snag that ellusive 19th rebound.
Oh, and a quick correction from earlier. I said Pondexter had a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds, but that’s wrong. I misread the stats, and it turns out he had just four boards. Still a pretty good game for Pondexter though, who now has scored 20 or more in three of his last four games.
The Huskies had four players—Isaiah Thomas (24), Dentmon (21), Brockman (21), and Pondexter (20)—score 20 or more points. That, obviously, is the type of balance that makes a team hard to defend.
“That really shows we can attack from a lot of different areas and we have a lot of different guys who can put the ball in the hoop,” said Brockman. “That’s hard for teams to guard because if you double team someone, someone else is wide open on the other side.”