No. 1 Washington Huskies 88, No. 16 Montana Grizzlies 77

Â

Â

Game Notes

-- The 11-point margin of victory matches closest game for a No. 1 seed in Tournament action since North Carolina defeated Fairfield 82-74 in 1997 (Kansas over Holy Cross 70-59 in 2002).

--14th time in 81 games that a No. 16 seed has played the top seed to a game 11 points or closer&No. 16 seeds are 0-81.

--77 points scored by Montana are the most by a No. 16 seed since North Carolina A&T tallied 79 against eventual national champion Arkansas in 1994.

--Washington opened the game 7-for-7 from the floor and had an 18-6 lead before missing its second shot&Montana started 1-for-10 from the floor, 0-for-2 at free throw line.

--Washington led by 19-points (27-8) at the 11:53 mark&Montana responded with a 15-5 over the next 6:37 run to cut the deficit to 32-23 with 5:16 remaining in the first half&Montana made 7-of-10 shots from the floor during the rally&Washington was 2-for-11.

--10th time this season Washington has had five or more players score in double figures.

--Washington snapped three-game losing streak to Montana.

--Prior to the game, Washington announced that head coach Lorenzo Romar agreed to a new 8-year contract&Romar is 57-34 in three seasons with the Huskies&his 57 wins tie him with John Grayson (1960-63) for sixth on the all-time Washington list.

--With 28 wins on the season, the Huskies matched the win total from 1953 (28-3), when Washington made its only Final Four appearance&UW will attempt to tie the school record of 29 wins set in 1938 when it faces Pacific, Saturday.

--Montana trailed by 17 points at halftime, matching the largest deficit the Grizzlies faced this season (at San Francisco, Dec. 20). -- Montana did not score until the 16:50 mark of the first half&the Huskies have made a habit of holding teams off the scoreboard for lengthy periods this year, holding five other opponents scoreless for more than three minutes.

--Washington improved to 7-0 in games played on a neutral floor this year&previous neutral floor victories for the Huskies include Utah, Oklahoma and Alabama at the Great Alaska Shootout and Arizona State, Stanford and Arizona at the Pac-10 Tournament. --Montana opened second half on a 9-2 run.

--Montanas Kamarr Davis tied his season high with 11 rebounds and added 24 points for his third double-double of the season.

Washington Huskies (No. 1 Seed)

Senior Guard Brandon Roy (on aggressiveness and intensity)
We come out with a lot of intensity and we rotated some guys in there who kind of kept the intensity up a little bit. But like coach (Lorenzo Romar) said, we kind of got cool down the stretch. Being a number one team is hard you know because the whole game you are thinking about that and we just had to put the fact that they were playing a good game behind us and get the win. Were still new to this whole system and we are just going to take the win and try to get better.

(on quieting the crowd )
Well for me it felt great. It was new to us to be at a neutral site and the other team cheering against us because you know we have Nate (Robinson) and everyone loves Nate. Weve kind of always been the underdog team so usually they follow us, but tonight we are the number one team and a lot of people think that we shouldnt be so they are kind of against us right now. I think I hit a few big shots and Tre (Simmons) hit some big shots. Thats what we have to do throughout the tournament you know when the other team makes runs at us a lot of guys have to step up in order for us to go far in the tournament.

Senior Guard Tre Simmons (on first four minutes of the game)
Usually we try to take advantage of our team early and I think thats what we did. Then we kind of played it cool after that, kind of turned the switch on and off, playing cool and then playing aggressively.

(on Washingtons intensity)
Thats how we try to bring it every game. I think coach (Lorenzo Romar) does a good job of pumping us up before the game. But thats just us, bringing intensity to the game.

Head Coach Lorenzo Romar (Opening Statement)
Montana was down 16-2 and did not fold at all. They continued to work hard. They got the ball down the stretch to their star player, Kamarr Davis and he ends up with 24 points. They did a very, very good job. Give our guys a lot of credit that when Montana would make runs at us, we would step up and make big plays for us today. That has been the trademark of our team all year. Guys, different guys step up and make big plays.

(on first four minutes of the game)
I thought we played exceptional basketball, but again we were only as good as our defense. I thought our defensive intensity was outstanding in the beginning, which enabled us to get great looks at the basket.

(on Saturdays second round opponent Pacific)
(Pacific) Coach (Bob) Thomason is probably one of the best coaches in America. Him and his staff do a fantastic job. They do not make mistakes; they are a well oiled machine. We got to play at such a higher level Saturday.

(on finishing first half strong)
It was very important. We finished the half the right way. We were able difference ourselves by 17, where as before it was pretty close before.

MONTANA QUOTES

Senior Forward Kamarr Davis (on battling back from a big lead)
Coach told us, they love to take quick shots. We believed in the coaching staff and went out contested shots and got rebounds. Then we pushed it back at them. We began to run our offense, and thats what got us back in the game.

(on his offensive performance) They like to play post defense on the high side. I just posted up on the strong side. When we swung it to the high post he was already on the top side. Then I just sealed and had an easy lay-up.

Junior Guard Kevin Criswell (on opening minutes of the game)
I think they came out and hit eight of their first nine shots, and we were kind of lapsed on the defensive end. I dont know if it was because of the pressure of the tournament, or guys not ready to play. It would have been nice to get that three and half, four minutes back. We kind of settled the storm there. In the late, late first half we made a game of it.

(on crowd support)
You have to love that atmosphere. I dont know whether its Boise loving coach more, or loving Montana. We made a run in the first half and a couple in the second. It really gets the adrenaline pumping when you have the majority of the crowd on your side.

(on cutting the lead down to nine)
I think we got lackadaisical on our offensive end. A missed lay-up and two turnovers in a row. They came down hit a three, two lay-ups, and the lead was back up to 17. With a great team like them, you cant afford to have those kind of mistakes.

Head Coach Larry Krystkowiak (on the game)
It was really difficult getting down 16-2. I asked the guys at the end of the game how many of the guys wanted to start the ball game over and have another chance. I dont know exactly what took place. I know there was an extreme amount of pressure at the beginning of the game and then we would get an open look and it seemed like we just couldnt wait to shoot it. Id love to be able to rewind and go back in time and know what we know now and come out with a different first four minutes. We have (played pressure teams) before this season. The first guy that gets an open look assumes that he has to shoot it, rather than maybe passing up what would be considered an average shot at that point and making them play defense a little bit longer.

(on his players)
Good, bad or indifferent, I thought that our kids fought to the end. I dont think that there was anybody out there interested in moral victories and trying to make it tough.