It was the last time the Huskies (4-3) had played in an overtime game at home since defeating Arizona State 73-70 on February 26th, 2009.
Anderson, a junior college transfer from Missouri this season, pulled in his final rebound with 17 seconds remaining in the second overtime off an Andrew Andrews free throw miss. He was immediately fouled by the 49'ers A.J. Spencer and made one of two free throws to put Washington up 92-89.
"Mike was our savior tonight," said UW Head Coach Lorenzo Romar. "He just came up with a couple of and-one put-backs and came up with another rebound to give us another possession. He gave a Herculean effort for us tonight. And it's something he did in junior college - helped wherever needed."
Long Beach State's Mike Caffey raced down the floor to try a three-pointer with four seconds left but it clanged off the iron and into the corner where it was retrieved by the 49'ers' David Samuels, but he was unable to put up any kind of a shot as time expired.
Anderson led six Huskies in double-figures. Perris Blackwell fought through early foul trouble to finish with 18 points and nine rebounds. Andrews had 18 points, eight boards, five assists and a steal. C.J. Wilcox made his first two three-pointers en route to a 15-point, three-assist, two-block and two-steal evening, and both Nigel Williams-Goss and Darin Johnson scored 10 points for Washington.
Caffey's 28 - including 4-10 from three-point distance - led Long Beach State (1-7), while they also got 22 points, six rebounds and three blocks from West Virginia transfer Dan Jennings. Spencer chipped in with 12 and Samuels 11 for the 49'ers.
The first half was another struggle for the Huskies, who have had their fair share of troubles getting off to quality starts. After allowing Montana to shoot 71 percent from the field in the first half of UW's come-from-behind win, UW again was sluggish from the jump. Their defense, designed to pack in and eliminate driving lanes, was ineffective against a fearless group of 49'ers. Long Beach State shot 58.6 percent the first half, making 12 of their first 16 shots.
"In the first half, it was guys beating us off the dribble," Romar said when asked to diagnose the issue. "In the second half we just had a lot of blown assignments, early in the second half.
"If you look at (Long Beach State's) record and not knowing who they've competed against early - you may not think they're not that good, but they are a good basketball team. Give our guys a lot of credit in this game; just move the chains."
Washington used a great half shooting from the free throw line to actually lead by one at half, but again the 49'ers used their dribble-penetration and strength inside to an eight-point lead with 6:23 remaining in regulation.
Anderson went to work, as 13 of his 16 rebounds came in the second half. "It's just me competing," Anderson said, matter-of-factly. "I like to compete."
Williams-Goss sparked the comeback with five-straight points, and then Anderson had two old-fashioned three-pointers of his own back-to-back. Andrews got in on the three party and then Blackwell hit two free throws to give Washington their first second-half lead since the 19:04 mark.
After trading possessions, Caffey raced down for a layup to give Long Beach State a 78-77 lead with 11 seconds left. Williams-Goss countered with a drive of his own and was fouled by Samuels with three seconds remaining in regulation. His first free throw was short and curled off right, but his second was true - tying the game at 78. Caffey and Kris Gulley attempted shots around the rim as time expired, but Wilcox came up clutch with a block to send the game into overtime.
"I'm concerned about the number of layups we gave up," Romar said. "I'm also looking at the big picture. You always hear the cliche 'Take one game at a time'…well, with our team right now that's what we really have to do. We kind of have to do it with smoke and mirrors until we at least get Desmond (Simmons) back and some other guys are more experienced - until, as a group, we understand what we're trying to do conceptually."
NOTE:: Romar was asked about a timetable for Simmons' return. "He's the same," Romar said of the junior forward, who had his knee scoped on November 7th. "We expect him back the last week of December. We have six games between now and then. We have to keep playing hard and get better."
That means the team is hoping to get Simmons back no later than the home game versus Hartford on December 29th, but hopefully the home game versus Mississippi Valley State on December 27th.
Points: Anderson 19, Blackwell 18, Andrews 18, Wilcox 15, Williams-Goss 10, Johnson 10, Kemp 2
Rebounds: Anderson 16, Blackwell 9, Andrews 8, TEAM 4, Williams-Goss 2, Wilcox 2, Dierickx 2, Kemp 2, Johnson 1
Assists: Williams-Goss 5, Andrews 5, Anderson 3, Wilcox 3, Dierickx 1
Steals: Williams-Goss 2, Wilcox 2, Anderson 1, Andrews 1
Blocks: Wilcox 2, Johnson 1
UW outlasts Long Beach State in 2OT
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