Meltdown in Seattle: Bone doesn't mince words

SEATTLE -- Ken Bone didn't mince words Saturday. "That was a disaster, that second half," the Cougar coach said after watching his team's 40-36 halftime lead at Washington turn into a 92-64 beat down.

The Cougars dominated much of the first half, only to miss their first 13 shots in the second. A raucous, sellout crowd of 10,000 enjoyed a ferociously played contest Saturday afternoon at Bank of America Arena.

The Cougars bolted to a 14-3 lead by hitting 5 of their first 7 shots and holding the Huskies to one basket on their first nine attempts. In the second half, however, Washington held a 63-23 percent advantage in shooting, and the Cougars missed all 10 of their 3-point attempts after going 6 for 10 from beyond the arc in the first half.

"I thought in the first half they probably played harder than us," Husky coach Lorenzo Romar said.

The game was all but over once Washington outscored WSU 19-2 to start the second half. It took nearly 7 minutes for DeAngelo Casto to produce the Cougars' first field goal of the half.

"We just didn't come out as aggressive in the second half," WSU guard Xavier Thames said. "We didn't play with the same energy."

"They outhustled us and outrebounded us in the second half," Cougar forward Nikola Koprivica.

The 28-point margin of defeat and the 92 points allowed were the worst numbers for WSU against Washington since a 103-70 loss in Pullman on Feb. 1, 1975.

The only time Washington has scored more than 92 points at home against WSU came in a 103-92 decision Feb. 4, 1972.

The undersized Cougars battled the Huskies to a 22-22 draw on the boards in the first half, despite one possession where Washington appeared to have five or six offensive rebounds.

Washington, the Pac-10 scoring and rebounding leader coming into Saturday, won the battle of the boards 52-38 after piling up a 30-16 advantage in the second half.

"The first thing we've got to do is get in the weight room this spring," Bone said. "It's a little too late for now, but we've just got to get stronger."

A physical contest was interrupted by 50 fouls (28 for Washington, 22 for WSU). Thames and Washington star Quincy Pondexter drew technicals after they exchanged words late in the first half.

The Huskies, 14-1 at home and 14-7 overall, moved into a five-way tie for fifth place in the Pac-10 at 4-5. Only 3-6 Oregon State is lower. WSU, 14-7 overall, is one of the 4-5 teams midway through the Pac-10 schedule.

The freshman Thames scored a season-high 15 points on 6-for-8 scoring in his third start, but WSU's top three scorers all struggled.

Klay Thompson, the Pac-10 co-leader in scoring coming into the game (and tied for ninth in NCAA Division I with Stanford's Landry Fields) with 22.3 points per game, was held to seven points on 2-for-15 shooting. In the past two games, Thompson is 7-for-32 for 20 points.

"I think he's pressing," Bone said.

"Uh, yeah, I guess so," Thompson said. "If he thinks so."

Bone and Thompson credited the Huskies with good defensive work on him. However, Thompson added, "I think there were five or six times I was open. I've just got to make the shot."

Freshman point guard Reggie Moore, who was averaging 14.4 points after topping 20 points in three of the previous four games, had 13 points and a season-high eight turnovers.

"We played AAU together, so I know all of his little jerks (moves)," Husky defensive whiz Venoy Overton said.

Sophomore post DeAngelo Casto, who was averaging 10 points, a team-high 7.4 rebounds and a league-best 2.1 blocked shots, finished with four points, two rebounds and two blocks.

Thompson, a sophomore, failed to start for the first time in college because he was slightly late for the bus to the airport Friday. Thames started in his place.

Thompson agreed with Bone that the "benching" -- he played early in both halves and totaled 31 minutes -- had no impact on his play.

Thompson said he had the wrong departure time for the bus and "deserved" to be pulled from the starting lineup.

The Cougars had originally said they would to bus to all Northwest road games as a cost-saving measure.

The Cougars abandoned their standard man-to-man defense to go with a 2-3 zone most of the time against the Huskies.

"They are not a great 3-point shooting team, and the 2-3 worked real well in the first half, so we stayed with it in the second half," said Bone, a Seattle native and former Husky assistant under Romar. "When they just started lighting it up, we finally got out of it and went man.

"By that time, I think they had it rolling. It didn't matter what we did."

Bone added, "Give U-Dub all the credit. They pretty much put us in our place."

The 52 rebounds was a season high against WSU. The Cougars were outscored 42-18 in the paint, and Washington was credited with all 16 points off fast breaks.

"Our main goal was to control the defensive boards and don't let them run in transition, and we failed in both of those in the second half," Koprivica said. "In the first half, we had it under control."

Koprivica scored 13 points and tied his career high by grabbing a team-high 11 rebounds. He nailed all three of his 3-point attempts in the first half while making his first start of the season, although he he usually plays far more than previous starter Abe Lodwick, who has just six points in nine Pac-10 games.

"Everybody likes to start, but (I have) no preference," Koprivica said. "It was great to start, but whatever Coach decides, I'm fine with.

"As long as we're winning and doing good, I'll be happy no matter what."

Bone said he has not decided if Koprivica will remain in the starting lineup when the Cougars start the second half of the Pac-10 season Thursday at home versus Arizona State (15-7, 5-4). The 7 p.m. game will not be televised.

A sophomoric pro-Husky website printed cell phone numbers for three WSU players and encouraged Husky fans to harass the players with text messages and phone calls. Just one problem: Two of three numbers were wrong.

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