Coming into Thursday night's game against the University of Washington, the ASU men’s basketball team aimed for its first opening week win in conference play.
The Sun Devils failed after being on the wrong end of the 68-64 contest against the Huskies.
ASU struggled with interior defense against UW, with UW junior forward Noah Dickerson taking command of the floor with his 6-foot-8-inch frame.
Dickerson racked up his fifth double-double of season – and he did so before halftime.
The Sun Devils’ adjustments kept the UW big man quiet for the majority of the second half. He ended the night with 21 points and 16 rebounds.
Nevertheless, ASU steadily chopped into the Huskies 10-point halftime lead.
The man responsible for Dickerson on defense, was the same guy who had a double-double of his own – redshirt freshman forward Romello White.
White reeled in 43 percent of ASU’s 32 rebounds on the night.
Not to mention, his 10 points were the most by a Sun Devil not a part of “Guard U."
Except, it didn’t look like the team that shot the University of Colorado out of the gym on Saturday.
The Sun Devils shot 26 percent from behind the arc (5-of-19).
ASU’s offense was too little too late — the team turned the ball over on 21 percent of its 71 possessions.
And UW junior guard Matisse Thybulle was the likely bandit. With his six steals Thybulle stole first place on the Huskies’ single-season steal record (70).
After a massive exhale with the team remaining in the AP top 25 (No. 25), the Sun Devils are destined to be bounced out – possibly for the Huskies.
The next test will come on Sunday when ASU travels Washington State University. Hoping to split for the fifth week in a row, head coach Bobby Hurley will have to settle with the fact that this weekend won’t be the first time he sweeps a Pac-12 weekend series.
Editor's note: Due to an editing error, the original version of this article generalized the Sun Devil's defensive struggle and has been modified to reflect the team's interior defensive struggle during the game.