Huskies Insider Blog

UCLA 98, Washington 66: Markelle Fultz not expected to play Saturday at USC, either (and other postgame quotes)

Here is everything Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar said after Washington’s 98-66 loss to No. 3 UCLA on Wednesday night at Pauley Pavilion. Most notably, Romar said injured guard Markelle Fultz, who sat out Wednesday’s game with a sore knee, is not expected to return for Saturday’s game at USC. Fultz, the Pac-12’s leading scorer, has missed four of UW’s last six games, though Romar wouldn’t rule out a return for next week’s Pac-12 tournament.

Here is everything Romar said after Wednesday’s game:

(Opening) “I don’t want to add any pressure, but that UCLA team is a team that could win a national championship. That is such a potent offensive team and they’re long enough with their length to be disruptive on defense. They’re a really impressive team and you can’t come out on the road and turn the ball over 20 times against that team. Thirty-four points out of that, it’s just too much. Every time you make a mistake they’re able to capitalize.”

(Was Markelle Fultz close to being able to play?) “No, we were told that he couldn’t go, he just needs to be shut down.”

(Any more optimistic for Saturday?) “No, he probably won’t play Saturday.”

(Is his season over?) “We don’t know. It’s too early (to say).”

(Were turnovers just negligent or UCLA that good?) “Some of them were negligent. Some others is, they anticipate well, they’re 6-4, 6-5 and 6-6 on the perimeter, and they move well. They’re crafty. Lonzo Ball is as crafty as any senior, and then Bryce Alford and Isaac Hamilton are seniors and Aaron Holiday is probably their best perimeter defender, and then they have 7-footers around the rim, so when you go to make passes, there’s just not a lot there.”

(Last time you played UCLA, you said it didn’t look like your team and you didn’t fight. Was that different tonight?) “I thought we fought more tonight. I didn’t think we quit at all. I thought early on, there were too many times that we came back on defense and we were back but we weren’t totally as organized as we needed to be, and you give them one second and they burn you. You just don’t play against anybody like that every day. You just don’t. They’re a very, very good basketball team.”

(On what they can learn from this game) “Throughout the game, at times we became a little more alert. I think we understand we just have to be in a mode for 40 minutes where every pass, we’ve got to be alert. Hopefully that can take us into the tournament, and we see what a detriment turning the ball over is.”

(Is there still confidence that you can find something in the next couple days to allow you to compete at USC?) “It’s been a long time since we won a game, and our guys just keep coming back practicing with great attitude, so I anticipate us coming back on Saturday with the right attitude.”

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Here are some postgame comments from sophomore forward Noah Dickerson and sophomore guard Matisse Thybulle:

NOAH DICKERSON

(Hard to keep fighting in a game like that?) “It’s not hard because I know we all want to win and it’s not happening. I know last time in Seattle when we played them, we threw in the towel, and we didn’t do that this time. But they’re a really good team, and they can all shoot.”

(On UCLA’s early 11-0 lead) “It hurt because it was from our negligence. A couple just open 3s and I remember from last year how Bryce (Alford) is, and that’s what he does. He’s a shooter. Once you see a ball go in, you let it fly. We let him get a couple good ones early, and that just propelled them. So we’re already starting from a deficit.”

(On UCLA’s defense) “... They sit there and wait, have their arms down so you really can’t see how long they are, and they shoot the gap. We turned the ball over way too much. 34 points off our turnovers. Kind of ridiculous.”

(On whether the team feels it can turn around and compete at USC) “No doubt. That’s one thing this team hasn’t done -- we’re all still together, we’re all still fighting, we all want to win. We all want to get better. This is what we want to do. That’s just what we do. We play hard, practice hard and we’re going to finish as strong as we can.”

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MATISSE THYBULLE

(On UCLA’s defensive pressure) “They’re a great team and they put a lot of pressure on us passing the ball around. I think what really is hard for us is just not having Markelle out there. Him being one of our main ballhandlers, and he’s able to take such good care of the ball and make such good plays. Not having him put a lot of pressure on guys who aren’t used to being in those positions. Playing against UCLA just made it that much harder for us.”

(On trying to defend Bryce Alford) “We didn’t communicate well throughout the game and we lost him multiple times. If he just sees it, it’s a bucket. I give him a lot of props because he hit a lot of tough shots. We definitely helped him a little bit.”

(On trying to fight the whole game) “We didn’t quit toward the end. We kept playing. The score isn’t going to tell you that much, but man to man on the team, we know we didn’t give in like we did last time.”

(On confidence heading into USC game) “After every game we look at little victories, the places where we got better, and I think that over the course of the season we’ve gotten a little bit better at a lot of things. If you can pull all those things together for these last few games we’ve got, I think we’ll be all right.”

Christian Caple: 253-597-8437, @ChristianCaple

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