As I pulled into my parking spot at Wells Fargo Arena, it surprised me at how many students were…
Huskies top Cougars in Pullman
Washington State was led by Mike Ladd's 16 points and six boards. Brock Motum had 15 points and DeVonte Lacy added 10.
Washington scored the first nine points of the game, as WSU settled for contested jumpers and didn't hit anything early on. Washington State finally got on the board with a Lacy drive over five minutes in. When CJ Wilcox buried a 28 foot bomb from well beyond the top of the key, the Huskies had a 13 point lead at 17-4. Out of a stoppage, Shawn Kemp Jr. got into the act in a big way with back to back thundering jams. Time out WSU…21-4 Huskies lead.
That was the end of the gravy train for the Huskies, who then began to turn the ball over and WSU began to hustle on the offensive boards. That led to points and some better shooting. A Mike Ladd three pointer over Suggs brought the Cougars to within 8 at 25-17. It was answered by a Wilcox dunk to make it double digits again, but not for long. Ken Bone drew a technical foul, and Wlicox hit one of the two free throws, but the Huskies could not capitalize. Will DiJorio hit a long three, and the Cougars were within six. An Aziz driving layin and two Wilcox free throws put the Huskies back on top 10 again.
The Huskies had a chance to take that double digit lead to the locker room but a silly turnover by Andrews followed by an N'Diaye foul with just two seconds left in the half let the home team back into the contest at 34-27.
The second half went back and forth until another bad turnover by the freshman Andrews, leading to a Lacy drive that was contested from behind by Suggs. Suggs drew a flagrant foul on the play, which changed the complexion of the game. Lacy made both free throws to pull the Cougars within five at 41-36.
Then came some brutal basketball. The two teams proceeded to exchange turnovers and missed shots from there. About the only thing of note was a poor offensive foul call on Gaddy as Motum was able to fool the officials by sliding in Gaddy's way en route to the hoop, and the Cougar crowd's class cheers of "&uck the Huskies, clap-clap-clap clap clap". Thankfully the media time out at 12:00 left in the game stopped the carnage.
The Cougars climbed within four when Motum finally hit a tough baseline field goal, and then a Wilcox failed attempt at a alley-oop dunk led to a beak away lay in for WSU and the score was 46-42, and Romar called time out.
WSU pulled even with back to back lay ins. A Motum three gave WSU their first lead of the night with 7:10 left in the game, and the crowd came to life and began to do the Florida State (or Atlanta Braves, take your pick) tomahawk chop.
WSU turned the ball over, leading to an Andrews jam. That was answered by a DiJorio uncontested three. An N'Diaye air ball led to another Cougar lay in and the Cougar lead was four. N'Diaye answered with an offensive put back and then a Simmons jam tied it once again.
DiJorio hit another three with the shot clock at one to answer.
Then came the series that won the game for the Huskies. Gaddy beat Lacy on the drive and feathered in a jumper. N'Diaye followed that with a blocked shot, leading to another jumper by Suggs to push the Huskies into the lead.
Motum was fouled on the next possession by Desmond Simmons. The Cougar senior hit two of three free throws, which set the stage for Scott Suggs. The senior from Saint Louis hit a very difficult 20 footer on a fade-away to push the Huskies up by one.
He followed that with a lay in and the Huskies clung to a three point lead.
A bailout foul call on Suggs put Mike Ladd at the line. He made both attempts to narrow the Husky lead to one. Andrews went to the line at the 22 second mark with a one and one chance. He buried the first and the Cougars expended their final time out. He calmly swished the second.
A Lacy three was long and Gaddy missed the opportunity to wrap up the game. The Cougars were awarded the ball on the Gaddy miss because they had incorrectly called it a two shot foul, when in reality it was a one-and-one.
The Huskies fouled Ladd with just over 4 seconds left. He missed the front end on purpose but the Cougars weren't able to corral the rebound, knocking it out of bounds. Andrews was fouled on the next inbounds attempt and made both free throws to salt away the win for the Huskies.
Washington, who out rebounded the hosts 29-24, improved their record to 9-5 and are 1-0 in conference play. The next game for the Huskies will be at California on Wednesday evening (8PM tipoff).
Points: Wilcox 18, N'Diaye 14, Suggs 11, Gaddy 9, Andrews 8, Simmons 4, Kemp 4
Rebounds: N'Diaye 10, Wilcox 7, Simmons 5, Gaddy 4, TEAM 3, Andrews 2, Suggs 1
Assists: Gaddy 5, Wilcox 3, Andrews 3, Simmons 2
Steals: Simmons 2, Andrews 2, Wilcox 1
Blocks: N'Diaye 2, Wilcox 2, Gaddy 1
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