SEATTLE (AP)—Spencer Hawes just said hello to America. Way worse for LSU, he said hello to Glen Davis.
Hawes, Washington’s heralded freshman center, dominated Davis, LSU’s preseason All-American, with season highs of 23 points and 12 rebounds to lead the 17th-ranked Huskies to an 88-72 runaway victory over the 12th-ranked Tigers on Wednesday night.
“Man, games like that are so much fun. That’s why you sign up to do this,” a beaming, giddy Hawes said following his nationally televised breakout game. “I mean, if I’m correct, Davis was a first-team All-American.
“These are the matchups you live for.”
Jon Brockman added 19 points, 14 rebounds and relentless banging of Davis for Washington (9-1), which won its 26th consecutive nonconference home game while hosting an SEC team for the first time since 1985. The Huskies also erased all doubts from a humbling, 20-point loss at No. 22 Gonzaga on Dec. 9 in their only other game against a ranked team this season.
“Our front line, I hate to brag on them, but they were pretty impressive,” Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar said, smiling.
Davis scored eight points on 3-for-11 shooting through a blanket of Washington defenders, four of whom descended upon him nearly every time he got the ball inside. So ended Davis’ streak of 48 consecutive games of scoring in double figures.
Last season’s SEC player of the year went 22 minutes between his first field goal and a putback with 7:59 left that cut Washington’s lead to 77-56.
Tasmin Mitchell scored 20 points for LSU (6-3), which dropped to 1-2 against ranked teams this season.
LSU coach John Brady seemed almost dumbfounded by Hawes’ and Brockman’s manhandling of his team, which reached the Final Four last season.
“Those guys just beat us every which way possible. And that hadn’t happened to us in a long time,” Brady said. “I don’t have any excuses. Those two guys introduced us to playing hard tonight. … They physically whipped us.”
Davis and Brockman traded elbows and jersey grabs for much of Davis’ lowest-scoring game since he had eight points at Mississippi as a freshman two seasons ago. Afterward, Brockman had a rectangle-shaped bandage under his left eye and red scrapes on his face and arms—hardly the look of a man who won the night-long grudge match against Davis down low.
Davis admiringly called Brockman “a pounder.”
“I told him he needed to cut his finger nails,” Brockman said, smiling. “It was unbelievable defensive effort. … He’s the best post I’ve ever played against.”
Hawes wasn’t bad, either.
The 18-year-old high school All-America last season from Seattle, who turned down North Carolina to stay home, was larger than his 7-foot frame. He also belied it. He was 10-for-16 from the field while unfurling a dazzling array of hook shots and spinners, plus guard-like jumpers and fadeaways. Most came against the bewildered Davis.
When Hawes spun to the baseline and hit a hook over Davis with his right hand to give Washington a 29-14 lead 11 minutes in, Davis stood, momentarily stunned. He then shook his head at his younger challenger.
And when Hawes swished a fadeaway from 18 feet over Davis early in the second half to maintain Washington’s 14-point halftime lead, Davis smiled at Hawes. Hawes returned the grin.
“He did some things I didn’t think he could do,” Davis said.
Hawes then made consecutive jumpers with Magnum Rolle’s hand in his face at the top of the key. They put Washington ahead 57-43 with 17 1/2 minutes left.
After the second one, Hawes got into Rolle’s face at the other end and twice told him, “You can’t guard me!”
“That’s a little bit of my ‘old’ personality coming out. Sometimes, you can’t control it,” Hawes said sheepishly, his ruddy face turning red.
Davis’ streak of four consecutive games scoring over 20 points and four consecutive double-doubles also ended with a huff and a thud.
On his way off the floor for a first-half timeout, Davis talked to an official with hands on both hips.
“They are holding me,” he said. The official shook his head to disagree.
The Huskies led by as many as 19 points during a frenetic first half. Hawes scored 14 points. And Brockman was there to follow much of what Washington missed. He finished with nine offensive rebounds.
He alone far surpassed the energy of Davis or any other Tiger, who had won at Oregon State on Sunday night.
Davis admitted to being tired by Washington’s relentless defense and run outs. He didn’t score until 11 minutes had elapsed. LSU was down 13 by then.