No. 22 Washington 86, San Francisco 71

Seems there’s nothing Quincy Pondexter can’t do these days for


The only senior on the No. 22 Huskies scored 22 points while his

team started slowly, briefly gave away a big lead, then cruised to

an 86-71 victory over San Francisco on Sunday.

In the last five days, Pondexter has been a candy-striper,

bringing gifts to an injured opponent at a hospital. He’s been a

guest ballerina, as Grandfather in Seattle’s holiday production of

“The Nutcracker.”

And he’s scored 47 points to lead Washington (9-2) to two wins

before its defense of the Pac-10 championship begins on New Year’s


The way he’s going, the Huskies’ only senior may light the

annual fireworks off the Space Needle after that game against

Oregon State.

“Maybe we’re getting used to it,” Washington coach Lorenzo

Romar said of Pondexter’s eighth 20-point game this season.

As if he hadn’t done enough, after the game Pondexter spun a

giddy young relative around by his arms while his parents, Doris

and Roscoe Pondexter, watched with huge grins. Pondexter has been

hosting his folks from Fresno, Calif., all week.

“It’s been a great week for me,” Pondexter said with his own

wide smile. “Having my family here made me real comfortable. And

playing basketball, that’s the greatest thing in the world for me

right now.”

Rashad Green and Moustapha Diarra scored 14 points apiece for

San Francisco (4-10), which lost for the 10th time in 12 games.

Matthew Bryan-Amaning added 13 points and six rebounds for the

Huskies, who were coming off a surreal victory over No. 19 Texas

A&M on Tuesday night in which Aggies senior Derrick Roland

broke his right leg.

Pondexter and Romar spent Wednesday visiting Roland in the

hospital, where he had surgery to repair multiple fractures

sustained in a grotesque, on-court fall.

On Sunday, Washington’s captain helped the Huskies become the

16th team in NCAA history to win 1,600 games. The 6-foot-6 swingman

entered the day 12th in the nation in scoring, averaging 21.9

points per game.

“Pondexter’s a great player. He’s just a hard matchup,” said

San Francisco assistant coach Jeff Linder, who was taking questions

because coach Rex Walters had to catch a flight.

The Pac-10’s only ranked team won its ninth home game in nine

dates this season. Yet Pondexter had a paternal-like scolding for

his young team letting the Dons cut a 16-point, halftime lead to

47-43 with 11:43 remaining on a jumper and a 3-pointer by Michael


“We’re really disappointed about our lack of concentration,”

Pondexter said. “Going into the Pac-10 you want to build up some

momentum. We were doing a good job – until (Sunday’s) game.

“It was a little bit of slippage. … It wasn’t the win that we


It was only 53-47 before the Huskies went on a 13-2 run. Isaiah

Thomas twisted on a fast break and threw a shot in high off the

glass while getting fouled for his first basket in eight


Washington’s second-leading scorer at 18.8 points per game

entering Sunday then extended both arms with his palms facing


“Yeah, like ‘Finally!”’ Romar said with a chuckle of last

season’s Pac-10 freshman of the year, who regressed from a

season-low of nine points against Texas A&M with just four

points on Sunday.

Bryan-Amaning had six points in the decisive spurt, including a

thunderous dunk following a steal and an over-the-shoulder pass

from Elston Turner. A basket by Turner off a steal by Venoy Overton

and another emphatic slam by Bryan-Amaning off a deft pass inside

by Overton had the Huskies comfortably up 66-49 with 6 minutes


San Francisco hasn’t beaten a Pac-10 team since Dec. 2, 1997,

when the Dons beat California.

Dior Lowhorn, the two-time defending scoring leader of the West

Coast Conference, came in averaging 19.2 points per game but was

continually tied up inside by the swarming Huskies. He missed eight

of his first nine shots while Washington took control. Lowhorn

finished with 13 points on 5-for-16 shooting.

Thomas missed his first seven shots and is 4 for 22 in his last

two games. Yet he is being more of a point guard, with 19 assists

and just five turnovers in the last three contests.

“He’s been a scorer all his life, so I’m sure it bothers him.

But he’s not whining, not down about it,” Romar said. “And as

we’ve seen the last few games, he’s found other ways to help his

team. That’s the sign of a great basketball player.”