It was a steep fall when Kelsey Plum and Mike Neighbors left Washington.
Plum, the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer, led the Huskies to a 29-6 mark as a senior in 2017. When the season ended with a loss in the Sweet 16, Neighbors left to coach at Arkansas.
New coach Jody Wynn inherited an inexperienced team that finished 7-23 last year, including a 1-17 mark in Pac-12 play. The Huskies were picked to finish last once again in a preseason coaches poll.
“Sometimes, it was very hard,” said junior guard Amber Melgoza, who averaged 19.0 points per game. “We know that we have each other’s back and I knew none of us were going to fail with that.”
The Huskies return four starters from last season including forwards Mai-Loni Henson and Hannah Johnson, who averaged 9.4 and 7.7 points per game, respectively. Johnson led the Huskies with 5.4 rebounds per game.
Guard Jenna Moser, who arrived on campus as a practice player, received a scholarship prior to last season before averaging 8.7 points with a team-high 78 assists. She was granted an extra year of eligibility to return this year.
“It has been a really reflective experience for me to look back on last season and say there were a lot of things that happened that I wanted to change, but we have to keep moving forward,” Moser said. “Now that I have the opportunity for another year, it’s a happy feeling to get new chances and another class coming in that I get to help lead.”
Moser was certainly one of the bright spots in Wynn’s first season.
“For us it was about celebrating little successes, every single day,” Wynn said. “We talk a lot about the scoreboard might have been a liar at some points based on how the coaching staff views the game.”