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Originally published February 21, 2011 at 9:06 PM | Page modified February 22, 2011 at 6:31 PM

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Seattle U. coach Cameron Dollar could throw new trick at Washington

In last year's 123-76 loss to UW, the Redhawks fouled 46 times. The Huskies can only guess at what tactic former UW assistant Cameron Dollar might throw at them in Tuesday's game at KeyArena.

Seattle Times staff reporter

Tuesday

Washington @ Seattle U., KeyArena, 7:10 p.m., FSN

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That's Dollar.

Washington players repeated those words over and over while describing last year's blowout win over the Seattle University when the Redhawks employed a Hack-a-Husky tactic, which turned a basketball game into a mugging.

At the behest of SU coach Cameron Dollar, the former UW assistant, the Redhawks intentionally fouled Washington on nearly every possession in the second half after falling behind 61-20 at halftime.

The Redhawks committed 46 fouls and sent Washington to the line 61 times. The Huskies converted 46 foul shots — a school record — in their 123-76 victory.

Over the final 87 seconds, Seattle U. played with just four players because six others had fouled out of the 2 ½-hour marathon.

"It was crazy," UW senior co-captain Justin Holiday said. "It was Dollar pulling out all kinds of tricks and doing different stuff to try and mix us up. It was probably one of the most awkward-feeling games that I've played in.

"When you're playing you're like, 'Wow, I can't believe this is happening.' But at the same time going against Dollar, it's not that hard to believe."

The Huskies are unsure what scheme Dollar and the Redhawks will unveil at 7:10 p.m. Tuesday when the teams renew their crosstown rivalry at KeyArena.

"We'll see what he does this time," Holiday said. "He might have something new for us."

Dollar's insider knowledge about his former team wasn't effective last year.

The Huskies raced out to an 18-0 lead and never trailed in the 47-point victory last season.

When asked what needs to happen differently Tuesday night, Dollar had a simply response: "Score."

"It would be good for us to come out and have a good start," he said. "Score some buckets early and kind of get in the flow."

Because Dollar is a Lorenzo Romar disciple, Seattle U. and Washington share many characteristics. Both teams favor aggressive, ball-hawking, man-to-man defenses that triggers their transition offense.

But the Redhawks (10-16) are averaging just 68.7 points, while Washington (18-8) is second in the nation in scoring at 85.7 points per game.

"We gave up some transition buckets that we shouldn't have, but other than that we just didn't make some shots," Dollar said. "If you don't make shots, it's going to be hard to obviously stay with them."

Despite last season's easy victory, Romar said it's never easy playing against Seattle U. because of his close connection with Dollar.

"I'd prefer not to," Romar said about coaching against Dollar. "You're trying to beat down your friend and he's trying to (beat you). What are you doing? We're boys. What are you doing?

"But we wouldn't have it any other way."

They met when Romar was an assistant at UCLA. He recruited Dollar to the Bruins. Their relationship grew when Romar hired Dollar as an assistant. They spent three years together at Saint Louis and seven at Washington.

"They pull for us and we pull for them," Romar said. "Except for when we play."

Tuesday's nonconference game allows the Huskies to momentarily forget about the tight Pac-10 race. They're third in the league behind Arizona and UCLA.

Holiday acknowledged playing Seattle U. right now isn't ideal timing, because Washington is smarting from an emotional defeat at Arizona last Saturday and the Huskies host a rematch with cross-state rival Washington State on Sunday. The Cougars upset Washington 87-80 last month.

Still, there's plenty at stake when Washington faces Seattle U.

"I think it's a good game for us to have so we can try to get some things right (and get) things to where they're supposed to be," Holiday said.

Notes

• Center Aziz N'Diaye will return to the starting lineup after being benched Saturday at Arizona.

• Junior forward Scott Suggs will miss his second straight game due to a left MCL strain. Romar was unsure if senior guard Venoy Overton would continue as his replacement.

• The Pac-10 released the times and TV schedule for the last week of the regular season. UCLA plays at Washington 6 p.m. March 3, and the game will be televised by either ESPN or ESPN2. On March 5, Washington hosts USC at 7:30 p.m. on FSN.

Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or pallen@seattletimes.com.

Staff reporter Bob Condotta contributed to this report.

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