SEATTLE – Senior C.J. Wilcox scored 22 of his 28 points in the second half, leading Washington to an 83-79 win over Montana on Tuesday night.
The Huskies (3-3) nearly squandered an eight-point lead over the final 1:14, as Montana scored seven unanswered points in a span of 63 seconds, but Montana's Chris Kemp missed the potential tying free throw with 11.2 seconds left. Wilcox hit a pair of free throws on the other end to put Washington ahead by three, then the Huskies intentionally fouled with 3.5 seconds left and effectively clinched the win when Montana's Keron DeShields missed the front end of a 1-and-1.
Wilcox went 5-for-8 from 3-point range, while freshman Nigel Williams-Goss added 20 points as the Huskies (3-3) snapped a two-game losing streak.
Montana's Jordan Gregory had a career-high 27 points behind 6-for-8 shooting from 3-point range, while DeShields scored 20 for the Grizzlies. Gregory's six 3-pointers were also a career high.
The Grizzlies (1-3) shot 59.6 percent from the field but squandered a six-point halftime lead while going 16-for-31 in the second half. They were out-rebounded 34-14 for the game.
Washington needed almost 27 minutes before taking its first lead, having finally pulled ahead 54-53 on a Mike Anderson free throw with 13:02 remaining. Wilcox followed that with a pair of 3-pointers while scoring 10 points in a span of just over four minutes, helping open up a 64-59 lead for Washington.
The Huskies' lead got as big as nine points, and they were leading 80-72 with 1:14 remaining before Gregory completed a traditional three-point play and finished off a fast break with an assist to Brandon Gfeller as Montana cut the deficit to 80-77 with 55.3 seconds left.
After Wilcox missed a shot at the other end, Montana's Kemp had a chance to tie the score on a traditional three-point play of his own with 11.2 seconds remaining. But Kemp, who had missed his only other two free throws of the season, was off target again as Washington maintained its 80-79 lead.
Montana used blistering shooting to take a 42-36 lead into halftime. The Grizzlies made 15 of 21 shots from the field, and 9 of 15 from 3-point range, over the first 20 minutes without ever falling behind. Montana's Gregory led the way with 15 points after hitting all five of his 3-point attempts in the first half.
Montana made 11 of 23 shots from 3-point range for the night.
Wilcox's five 3-pointers put him within nine of the school career record. He has now scored 20 or more points in five of Washington's first six games while averaging a team-high 23.8 points per game.
Before the game, Washington announced that sophomore Shawn Kemp Jr., a part-time starter who was averaging 3.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game, has been playing with an autoimmune condition called Graves Disease. Kemp was diagnosed with the condition in September and will continue to play through it.