University of Washington

No. 25 Washington hosts Western Kentucky, game preview

University of Washington guard Jaylen Nowell (5) walks back to the bench after a foul in the second half. The Washington Huskies played Seattle Pacific University in a preseason exhibition basketball game at Hec Edmundson Pavilion in Seattle, Wash., on Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018.
University of Washington guard Jaylen Nowell (5) walks back to the bench after a foul in the second half. The Washington Huskies played Seattle Pacific University in a preseason exhibition basketball game at Hec Edmundson Pavilion in Seattle, Wash., on Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018. joshua.bessex@gateline.com

WESTERN KENTUCKY (0-0) AT NO. 25 WASHINGTON (0-0)

7:30 p.m., Alaska Airlines Arena, Seattle

TV: ESPNU

Radio: KVI 571 AM/FM 97.7

All-time series: UW, 1-0

PROJECTED STARTERS

Statistics from 2017-18

WESTERN KENTUCKY

Josh Anderson, G (6-6, so.): 7.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg

Taveion Hollingsworth, G (6-2, so.): 13.3 ppg, 3.4 rpg

Jared Savage, G/F (6-5, jr.): 10.3 ppg, 4.4 rpg (Austin Peay)

Marek Nelson, F (6-7, so.): 2.6 ppg, 1.6 rpg

Charles Bassey, C (6-11, fr.)

WASHINGTON

1 David Crisp, G (6-0, sr.): 11.6 ppg, 3.1 apg

5 Jaylen Nowell, G (6-4, so.): 16.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg

33 Sam Timmins, F (6-11, jr.): 4.3 ppg, 4.6 apg

15 Noah Dickerson, F (6-8, sr.): 15.5 ppg, 8.4 rpg

4 Matisse Thybulle, F (6-5, sr.): 11.2 ppg, 2.9 spg

Scouting report: Western Kentucky had a tumultuous week leading up to Tuesday’s game against Washington.

The Hilltoppers had three different players miss time for disciplinary reasons during their two exhibition games. Taveion Hollingsworth and Josh Anderson will return against UW, while forward Desean Murray won’t make the trip.

Five-star freshman center Charles Bassey will make his regular season debut against the Huskies after averaging a double-double in two exhibition games.

“He’s a big-time player,” said UW head coach Mike Hopkins. “He was a top-five player in the country. … Great size, great athleticism. Competes, goes after the ball.”

Junior guard Jared Savage, a transfer from Austin Peay, averaged 18 points in the two exhibitions. Guard Josh Anderson scored 22 against Campbellsville but was suspended for the second exhibition.

Hopkins said Western Kentucky is aggressive defensively. In that way, he said they’re similar to Nevada. The Hilltoppers are also an attack team offensively.

The Huskies had success against Nevada, defeating the Wolf Pack in their first exhibition game. It was the slower, more deliberate style of Division II Seattle Pacific that gave UW trouble.

The Huskies should have all of their players available on Tuesday. Forward Noah Dickerson missed the first exhibition game with an injury, but played in the second.

Both teams narrowly missed making the NCAA Tournament field last season.

UW finished 21-13 and played two games in the NIT. Western Kentucky went 27-11 and lost to Utah in the NIT semifinals. Western Kentucky lost three key players from that team, including leading scorers Justin Johnson and Darius Thompson, but are still considered the the Conference USA favorites this season.

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