This one might have been decided by a possession arrow, which pointed Cal's way, setting the stage for Ryan Anderson to drain a rushed, moving, desperation 3-pointer in the final minute.
A last-second Venoy Overton 3 failed.
Cal goes on to meet UCLA tomorrow. UW, which finishes its season 16-16, returns home awaiting Selection Sunday in hopes of an NIT or -- more likely -- CBI invitiation.
Here's our game story from today's paper.
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A few reactions:
LORENZO ROMAR on the difference in the game: I think we can point to one statistic that was the deciding factor: They had 20 second chance points to our 14," UW coach Lorenzo Romar said. "And that's probably too many for them in a game that wound up being decided by three points.
JON BROCKMAN on players stepping up in his absence:
It's good to see. I think on the offensive end Quincy stepped up and was assertive. It's just something that he has to do consistently: It makes our team just that much better. Artem had some strong moves. It was good to see some guys step up.
ROMAR on Cal's 21-2 run that turned the game:(Cal) came down to score without any resistance from us three consecutive possessions. We took a forced shot and had a turnover during that period, and there it was.
JUSTIN DENTMON on the same run:
At that time I guess they wanted it more than we did. I think we fell back and got lackadaisical.
The Huskies never got ahead again, but they whittled the lead to one "
CAL'S RYAN ANDERSON on his final 3-pointer:
We ran a play that had a couple of options. … We played for me to come off a screen, and I guess I had an opening for a second. There was a hand in my face, but I tried to shoot it as normal as possible, and it went in.
ROMAR on if he thinks the Huskies deserve a postseason bid:
With the conference that we're in? No doubt. But I thought that last year.
QUINCY PONDEXTER, on why he doesn't play that way more often:I was deferring to (Brockman) this last season and making him a better player. It's one of those things, a coach's decision. I just follow. I'm a team player.
Here's a quick game capsule:
NO. 9 CALIFORNIA 84, NO. 8 WASHINGTON 81
Star of the game: California all-league forward Ryan Anderson scored 22 points and had a game-high 16 rebounds. Twelve of his points came in a game-changing 21-2 second-half run. And his 3-pointer in the final minute as the shot clock ran down was the clincher.
Key stats: Cal outrebounded Washington, 43-34. The Bears also outscored UW 20-14 in second-chance points, a difference that coach Lorenzo Romar considered decisive. The Golden Bears hit 32.4 percent of their shots in the first half, but 50 percent in the second.
Key run: Washington seemed on the verge of putting the game away early in the second half when three quick Ryan Appleby 3-pointers pushed their lead to 12 points. However, a DeVon Hardin dunk started a 21-2 run that gave the Bears a lead they never surrendered.
Observations: UW played without leading scorer and rebounder Jon Brockman, who sat on the bench with an ankle sprain. This was the first game he has missed in a 96-game college career, and it snapped a 69-game streak as a starter. … This was Washington's fourth loss in its last five games and ends the Huskies' season at 16-16 – unless they receive a postseason tournament bid on Sunday. … UW forward Quincy Pondexter got his first start since the seventh game of the season and led the Huskies with a season-high 23 points.
Game 2: No. 7 Arizona 87, No. 10 Oregon State 56.
Thursday's schedule: noon, No. 4 Southern California vs. No. 5 Arizona State; 2:30 p.m., No. 1 UCLA vs. No. 9 California; 6 p.m., No. 3 Washington State vs. No. 6 Oregon; 8:30 p.m., No. 2 Stanford vs. No. 7 Arizona. (All games on FSN.)