SEATTLE — Isaiah Stewart scored 18 points in just 15 minutes, Jayden McDaniels added 14 points and No. 25 Washington beat Montana 73-56 on Friday night.
The Huskies (4-1) relentlessly went to the paint — whether their center was on the floor or not — and used their length to stymie the Grizzlies and force 20 turnovers. Washington outscored Montana 38-10 under the basket and drew 33 fouls, hitting 35 of 46 free throws to power to the win.
The Huskies were called for just 18 fouls and Montana only went to the free throw like 13 times, hitting nine times.
Kendall Manuel scored 15 points and Sayeed Pridgett had 13 for Montana (1-4), which has lost three straight. Eddy Egun had six points, six rebounds and four assists for the Grizzlies.
Jared Samuelson got into a game for the first time this year, playing several total minutes as he continues a return from a knee injury. The Rocky Mountain College transfer was 0 of 3 and one rebound and two fouls.
It was the second straight win for Washington, which is on a seven-game nonconference homestand.
The Huskies started the game on a 9-0 run and had an 11-point lead with 6:55 to go in the first half. But Montana used a 14-3 spurt fueled by a stretch of 5-for-5 shooting stretch to tie the score at 29 on Pridgett’s 10-foot jumper. The Huskies shot 1 for 10 to finish the half before Jamal Bey’s driving layup at the buzzer gave Washington a 31-29 lead at the half.
The Grizzlies forced Stewart into his fourth foul just 1:15 into the second half, then took their first lead of the game when Pridgett hit a 3-pointer to make it 32-31 with 17:58 to go.
"I felt like we threw the biggest punch early in the second half and we had them where we wanted them," Montana head coach Travis DeCuire told the Grizzly Radio Network after the game. "Some foul trouble took some guys off the floor which took away some momentum."
The Huskies held it together while Stewart sat on the bench, though, and he returned with 8:46 to go. He was a foul magnet in the paint, drawing two free throws 25 seconds after he re-entered. He also had a block less than a minute after hitting the floor.
He hit 5 of 6 free throws over the final stretch while his teammates slowly pulled away by holding Montana scoreless for 3:43.
McDaniel hit a floater to make it 52-43 with 9:28 left, then threw down a putback dunk and drew a foul at 5:54 to make it 61-46.
Nahziah Carter added 13 points and seven rebounds for Washington.
Montana will be at home on Monday against Texas Southern. Tip is slated for 7 p.m.
"I think the conversation was more if we bring this type of energy every night, we'll be happier with where we're sitting over a period of time," DeCuire said. "We need to state it and we need to show that we can play to the level of competition every night. We need to bring this effort for 40 minutes."