Utah forward Donnie Tillman (3) goes to the basket as Washington forward Sam Timmins (33) defends in the first half of a game Jan. 18, 2018, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Utah forward Donnie Tillman (3) goes to the basket as Washington forward Sam Timmins (33) defends in the first half of a game Jan. 18, 2018, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Huskies fall to Utah 70-62 for 2nd straight Pac-12 loss

Washington shoots just 38.5 percent from the field in defeat.

Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak received a scare early Thursday when he found out starting point guard Justin Bibbins was dealing with flu-like symptoms. That clearly wasn’t an issue by game time.

Bibbins scored 20 and grabbed 10 rebounds as Utah broke a four-game losing streak with a 70-62 victory over Washington.

“He pulled a little Michael Jordan, I think,” Krystkowiak said.

The Huskies (13-6, 3-3 Pac-12 Conference) have now dropped back-to-back games for just the second time this season.

Utah (11-7, 3-4) muddled up the game throughout the night, but was locked in on defense and kept Washington from finding an offensive groove. Every time the Huskies seemed on the verge of putting together some type of run, the Utes had an answer — usually from the hands of Bibbins. Washington cut the lead to four late behind Jaylen Nowell’s 17 points, but could never get over the hump. Donnie Tillman grabbed two late offensive boards to help hold off the rally.

Washington shot just 38.5 percent from the field, including 2 for 18 from 3-point range, while Utah shot 37.5 percent, but hit 11 more free throws than the Huskies.

Krystkowiak and his players lauded the defensive effort.

“We’ve had a lack of effort and energy the last couple games,” Utah forward David Collette said. “We just came out and played like we should.

“We have a defensive plan. We’re able to guard people. It’s just a matter of effort. We’ve just got to get down and do it. We’ve been missing that. … Everyone’s just got to find it in themselves to give that effort.”

Tillman scored 14 and Collette had 10 points for Utah. The 5-foot-8 Bibbins had the game high in rebounds and added five assists.

The Utes took a 35-24 lead into halftime thanks to a 24-12 run after the Huskies took their final lead of the game at 12-11.

“We came out flat,” Washington coach Mike Hopkins said. “They played like their backs were against the wall. The way the game started, it set the tone. I thought they came out and they just attacked us and played more aggressive and wanted it more than we did.

“You got to commend Utah. They did a very good job of how they were going to attack us. They limited us with their defense. They iced us, forced us (into bad shots).”

The first 20 minutes were fairly sloppy as both teams turned the ball over seven times. Utah looked its best with Bibbins on the floor. He created easy baskets for teammates and scored a first-half high eight points.

The 24 points were a season low in the first half for Washington.

“I think that’s what helped them toward the end, is the beginning and how they started,” Washington guard Michael Carter III said. “They came out ready to play and we didn’t.”

The Huskies are now 0-4 when shooting under 40 percent. The Utes had a lot to do with that, but Washington never found any flow and was never able to string together three consecutive baskets or make a significant run.

Talk to us

More in Sports

POLL RESULTS: “The Last Dance” was a big hit

Readers watched the 10-part documentary on the Chicago Bulls of the 90s, and they liked what they saw.

Silvertips notebook: Fonstad likely to return to Everett

The winger is not signing a pro contract with Montreal, meaning a return to the WHL is likely.

MG’s Knight named Gatorade state baseball player of year

Despite not having a season, the star junior was recognized as the top overall player in Washington.

Stay or go? Local senior college athletes face tough decision

Whether to accept the NCAA’s offer of an extra year due to the missed spring season isn’t black and white.

Oregon State’s Mikayla Pivec speaks to reporters during the Pac-12 Conference women’s NCAA college basketball media day last Oct. 7 in San Francisco. (AP Photo/D. Ross Cameron)
Pivec won’t play in the WNBA during the 2020 season

The Atlanta Dream announce the Lynnwood High School product will sit out for personal reasons.

Kamiak names new boys basketball coach

Former Bishop Blanchet head coach and Edmonds-Woodway alum Joe DeGrazia replaces Brandon Corsi.

Felix Hernandez aims for 200 career wins and 3,000 strikeouts

But the COVID-19 pandemic is getting in the way of the former Mariner’s pitcher’s goals.

“The Last Dance,” a 10-part documentary produced by NBA legend Michael Jordan, is a 10-part series chronicling the Chicago Bulls’ run to the 1997-98 NBA championship, the franchise’s sixth title in eight seasons. (AP Photo/Beth A. Keiser)
POLL: Have you seen “The Last Dance,” and what’s your take?

The 10-part ESPN documentary on Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls has been a phenomenon of the pandemic.

Healthy George Karl starts podcast, may someday coach again

The ex-Sonics coach, who has survived cancer three times, talks about the time he offended Michael Jordan’s sensibilities.

Seahawks’ Wilson has a little ‘Air’ Jordan in him

Like the NBA great, the Seattle QB has shown he can use perceived slights to fuel his competitive fire.

Seahawks agree to deal with veteran running back

Carlos Hyde, who began his career in San Francisco, rushed for 1,070 yards for the Texans last season.

Readers believe Sue Bird and the Seattle Storm will be WNBA championship favorites when and if the 2020 season begins. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
POLL RESULTS: Storm expected to be WNBA title favorites

Nearly half the voters predicted Seattle to win the 2020 WNBA championship.