But a Nate Robinson three-point shot to bring the Huskies back from a 16-point second-half deficit on the road against Oregon State galvanized UW's resolve.
They went on to beat the Beavers in overtime and then proceeded to win eleven of their final twelve conference games - including a victory over then number-one Stanford - and two more in the Pac-10 tournament.
Hopes of finishing their season with a second victory over the Cardinal and an automatic berth to the NCAA tournament went out the window Saturday, as Mike Montgomery's team was able to avenge their only loss of the season.
But Washington's finishing stretch, as well as their showing in the conference tournament, convinced the NCAA selection committee and were rewarded with a number-eight seed in the St. Louis pod.
Their first-round matchup is against Alabama-Birmingham (20-9, 12-4) on Friday, March 19 in Columbus, Ohio at approximately 6:45 p.m. Pacific Time (9:45 Eastern).
If the Huskies get past the Blazers, they face a possible second-round battle royale Sunday with the overall number-one seed in the tournament - the University of Kentucky.
Huskies ready to dance
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