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Victory suits Romar

Washington gets a rare win away from home, 59-51, over stubborn Arizona State.

March 08, 2007|Ben Bolch | Times Staff Writer

Lorenzo Romar almost didn't get to use a second suit.

The Washington coach, who had brought a jam-packed suitcase to Los Angeles in anticipation of a deep run in the Pacific 10 Conference tournament, suffered through some tense moments in his opening-round game late Wednesday night.

After 10th-seeded Arizona State took a four-point lead over the seventh-seeded Huskies with less than nine minutes remaining, Romar angrily shouted "We're going home!" to his players during a timeout and slammed a clipboard to the Staples Center court for emphasis.

But the Huskies rallied for a 59-51 victory after making the key plays in the final minutes. There was a driving layup by Justin Dentmon, a basket inside by Spencer Hawes and, after the Sun Devils had closed to within two points again, a turnaround jumper by Jon Brockman in the lane that sent Washington on its way.

The Huskies (19-12) advanced to play second-seeded Washington State in a quarterfinal tonight.

The Cougars have defeated their cross-state rivals in four consecutive meetings.

Brockman scored 16 points and Dentmon and Hawes had 13 apiece for the Huskies.

Washington entered the tournament as arguably the hottest team in the conference, having posted back-to-back defeats of USC and UCLA at home during the final week of the regular season.

But then there was that 1-10 record away from Bank of America Arena.

The Huskies now have a victory on a neutral court to go with their only road victory, over Arizona State (8-22) on Feb. 1 at Wells Fargo Arena.

And Romar can unpack at least one more suit.

ben.bolch@latimes.com

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