SEATTLE — At first it seemed quirky to play the Washington State vs. Washington rivalry twice in a five-day span. Now that the first game today is here, the Huskies couldn’t think of a better way to make up for getting swept in Los Angeles.
The Huskies started the Pac-12 season with two wins, a first since the 2006-07 season.
But Washington lost to USC and then-No. 14 UCLA on the road, missing opportunities late in those games.
Rebounding and size, a problem all season, were the main culprits. Coach Kevin McGuff continues to say his team needs to become more aggressive to compensate for some of its weaknesses. Who better to start knocking around than WSU?
The Huskies (10-5, 2-2 Pac-12) have defeated the Cougars 34 consecutive times.
“That streak is something that the media and everyone around the program talks about,” said UW senior Kristi Kingma, who missed last season with a knee injury. “Inside, it’s more of a rivalry because we grew up with all of those girls.”
The game will be the third in five days for each team. Washington plays at WSU (5-10, 1-3) on Sunday to complete the regular-season series. The scheduling was designed to air conference rivalry games on the new Pac-12 Networks. The Huskies and Cougars play Tuesday at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. on the station.
The Cougars defeated then-No. 20 Ohio State at home and Gonzaga on the road during nonconference play, and are led by freshman guard Lia Galdeira (13.7 points per game) and sophomore point guard Tia Presley (13.6).
The Huskies have their own talented, youthful duo — sophomore point guard Jazmine Davis (20.5 points per game) and redshirt freshman forward Talia Walton (14.0).
Davis scored a career-high 37 points in her team’s 81-72 loss at USC on Friday.