On Sunday December 29th, the Huskies look to bounce back from a disappointing last second loss to Vanderbilt 76-74 by defeating rival Washington State Cougars in Pullman.
On paper, arguably the edge goes the the offensively challenged Huskies over the defensively challenged Cougars.
ven Matchup: Cougars Defense versus Huskies Offense
Washington State’s defense ranks in the 40th percentile nationally, giving up 0.778 points per possession.*
The Huskies offense is average at best, ranking in the 47th percentile nationally and scoring 0.771 points per possession.
This is a fairly even matchup but the Huskies are better statistically by a slim margin.*
The Cougars are particularly vulnerable to transition offense plus Pick & Roll and Handoff plays.*
These weaknesses suggest a lack of athleticism and some switching issues possibly due to poor communication or poor defensive fundamentals.
The Cougars worst defenders in Handoffs and Pick & Roll actions are #22 Celina Molina; #1 Chanelle Molina; and #41 Jovana Subasic — whom all surrender more than 1 point per possession on these types of plays.*
dvantage Huskies: Cougars Offense versus Huskies Defense
Meanwhile, the Cougars are much better on offense, ranking in the 73rd percentile and averaging 0.828 points per possession.*
However, the Huskies defense is excellent, ranking in the 98th percentile surrounding on;y 0.604 points per possession.*
This matchup significantly favors the Huskies defense if Washington plays up to its usual level of excellence.
The Cougars offense is excellent versus press defense (84th percentile); Pick & Roll actions (85th percentile); scoring Off Screens (94th percentile); and Isolation plays (92nd percentile).
The Huskies defense is excellent defending Pick & Roll actions (93rd percentile); Off Screens (99th percentile); and Isolation plays (95th percentile). The Huskies are rated very good at Press defense (82nd percentile).
This will be a strength-on-strength basketball matchup but the Washington Huskies are rated higher in defending all of the best offensive play types of the Washington State Cougars. Therefore, it should be difficult for the Cougars to run an efficient offense.
Players to Watch:
The Huskies must keep Washington State’s #45 Borislava Hristova under wraps. Hristova is capable of taking games over offensively, however, the Huskies elite defense should be up to the task.
Our Prediction: HUSKIES WIN!
*All Stats courtesy of Synergy, NCAA and Her Hoops Stats