Latest Team Rankings
Free Text Alerts
|ShopMobileRadio RSSRivals.com Yahoo! Sports|
|College Teams||High Schools|
January 7, 2007
The pain of many losing memories evaporated into the cool Pullman night as the Washington State men's basketball team defeated Arizona in Pullman for the first time since 1986 - beating the Wildcats, 77-73 in overtime. The win - pulled off without the services of injured [ankle] center Aron Baynes - moves the Cougars to 14-2 overall and puts them in a four-way tie for first place with the Wildcats, UCLA and USC. The victory is also expected to vault Wazzu up the RPI standings and give them their first Top 25 ranking in 23 years.
The Cougars were led in scoring by sophomore Daven Harmeling - who hit nine of 15 treys and wound up with a career-high 28 points. Harmeling led three Cougars in double figures as juniors Kyle Weaver and Robbie Cowgill tossed in 15 and 13 points, respectively, as Wazzu held off Arizona both in regulation and overtime. Weaver led the team in rebounding with 10 boards.
The Cougars got off to a blistering start, torching the Wildcats 11-2 out of the gate and keeping the margin at double digits all the way until midway through the first half at 19-9. But the Wildcats then went on their own blistering run and not only carved up the advantage but took a 27-24 lead into halftime. Shortly into the Wildcat run, freshman Nikola Koprivica collided with senior Ivory Clark sending both to the bench with cuts above their eyes. Both returned to the game, but the temporary loss of Clark allowed the Wildcats to rapidly close the gap in the first half.
All year long, the Cougars have been a second-half team and tonight was no different as Wazzu emerged from the locker room and immediately took the lead in the first five minutes of play. The Wildcats and Cougars exchanged the lead for the next few minutes and then Harmeling caught fire - scoring eight points in three consecutive Cougar possessions that put Wazzu up 51-46, just over halfway into the second half.
The Cougars kept their distance from the Wildcats for the next five minutes and after a Harmeling trey put WSU up 66-59 with less than two minutes to go in regulation, the Cougars looked poised to get the Arizona home monkey off their backs. But the Wildcats had one run left in them and used it then - outscoring WSU, 8-1 [mostly thanks to guard Mustafa Shakur] to finish tied at 67 in regulation.
But again, just as in the beginning of the second half, the Cougars erupted for the first six points of the overtime period and took a 73-67 lead with less than two minute sto play. Arizona began to make the same moves as they did in regulation but this time could not get the shots to fall. The Wildcats closed to within four but a Weaver steal coupled with a long pass to Chris Mathews for an easy two under the basket, clinched the victory for WSU in front of 7181 in attendance at Beasley Coliseum.
With the victory, the Pac-10 co-leading Cougars will now have to wait until Monday to see what their ranking will be while their RPI is expected to move into the teens.
The Cougars next take on California on Thursday, January 11 at 7pm in Berkeley.
+++++++sponsored by Clark's Restaurant+++++++++
Attention COUGAR Fans! Winter is here and now you're hungry. How can you afford to go one day further without some tasty morsels from Clark's Restaurant in Grays Harbor - home of the Best Hamburger in Twin Harbors for seven consecutive years? Come in for the burger, fresh homemade fries and milkshakes concocted from homemade ice cream. Go ahead, we dare you to try and pass up more than 12 varieties of hamburgers to choose from, full dinners, lunch and full breakfast served daily. Clark's Restaurant 360.538.1487. Seven miles south of Aberdeen, Washington on Highway 101. Proud supporter of CougZone. Mention this ad for a free small hot chocolate.