As usual, here's our postgame tale of the tape following Washington's 64-60 victory over Stanford at Hec Edmundson Pavilion.
PLAYER OF THE GAME — How about an outside-the-box pick: Desmond Simmons. Sure, he only scored four points. But the junior forward grabbed seven rebounds in 27 minutes, made a huge baseline jumper late in the game, then drew the game-clinching charging foul in the final seconds. Simmons’ most important contributions generally aren’t illustrated by the stat sheet. That was the case again Wednesday.
IT WAS OVER WHEN — You guessed it: Stanford guard Chasson Randle drove to the basket with a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Simmons slid over, drew the charge and clinched the victory for UW.
STAT OF THE GAME — Washington, which was riding a 3-game losing streak that featured mostly wretched defense, held the Cardinal to a 30.8 field-goal percentage in the second half.
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QUOTABLE — “It’s unfortunate we haven’t been better on the road. We still have two more on the road, but I think it’s pretty clear we’re just a different team this year when we’re at home, since conference play has started.” – UW coach Lorenzo Romar on why his team is so much better at home
WHAT IT MEANS — The Huskies are still really tough at Hec Ed. UW is now 5-0 at home in Pac-12 play, and has shown it can beat just about any conference opponent here. If the Huskies can find a way to beat Cal on Saturday, they’ll be back above .500 with five games remaining. The NIT should still be in play.
NEXT UP — California at Washington, Saturday, 12 p.m., Pac-12 Networks
Christian Caple can be reached at email@example.com. Twitter: @ChristianCaple