There weren’t any 58-point losses or massive losing streaks, but there weren’t enough wins for Washington coach Tia Jackson and her team during this preseason either. The Huskies close the non-conference schedule with a road matchup against Western Michigan (4-6) today.
The Broncos aren’t expected to do much as part of the Mid-American West, but nothing is a gimmie for the Dawgs (4-5). Jackson said the team had to go back to basics after a 17-point loss to No. 16 Michigan State (9-3) on Saturday.
UW was sloppy with the ball, flat on defense and took ill-advised shots. The Huskies had two spurts of good play against the Spartans — especially the posts working collectively to keep MSU senior star Allyssa DeHaan to 10 points. DeHaan is 6-foot-9.
But in comparison to other women’s basketball matchups around the country on Saturday, Washington still displays an inferior product. Then there are the injuries to consider.
Yet, if the grinding practices pay off with a win, Washington will enter Pac-10 play with its best record under Jackson’s three-year reign at .500.
“We did not come close to performing at the level we should have,” said Jackson of the MSU loss. “We really dropped the ball in a lot of areas. The last few practices were very, very good. But it’s about the carry-over into the game.”
The one positive Washington already has headed into the Pac-10 season is playing on the road. The Huskies, in the midst of a seven-game road stretch, won’t play at Edmundson Pavilion until Jan. 7 when it hosts No. 18 Arizona State (7-3).
UW’s opener is Jan. 1 at Oregon (9-2).
“It’s been really getting back to the basics for us, just playing basketball,” Husky senior Sami Whitcomb told The Everett Herald. “We’ve been thinking way too much out there, and it’s caused a lot of turnovers and un-smart basketball.”