Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

NCAAB

Washington State looking to make tourney run, starting vs. Cal

Washington State looking to make tourney run, starting vs. Cal

will look to build on a strong regular season-ending surge when it opens Pac-12 tournament play against on Wednesday in Las Vegas.

The seventh-seeded Cougars (18-13) scored an average of 89.3 points while winning their past three games. The most recent was a 94-74 rout of visiting Oregon on Saturday.

Washington State went 2-0 in the regular season against the 10th-seeded Golden Bears (12-19), who have lost four of their past five games and 14 of 17. Cal was shellacked while losing its last two games by an average of 27.5 points — 71-44 at Arizona State last Thursday and 89-61 at #2 Arizona on Saturday.

The winner faces the second seed, #13 UCLA, in Thursday’s quarterfinals.

The Cougars’ late-season success has some wondering if they could follow in the footsteps of last season’s Oregon State squad. The Beavers ripped through the Pac-12 tourney as a #5 seed to win the title and then made a memorable Elite Eight run in the NCAA Tournament.

“Last year, we were talking about how thin the margin is,” Washington State coach Kyle Smith said during a press conference. “I feel like we’re playing better. Coming off the Oregon game, I’m excited to see how we do.”

While the offensive uptick was welcome, the Cougars allowed 79.3 points during the three wins, raising their season average to 65.3 allowed per game.

The Golden Bears are struggling but did play the Cougars close in both losses — 65-57 at Pullman, Wash., on Jan. 15 and 68-64 at home in Berkeley, Calif., on Feb. 5.

Cal’s season was already in freefall mode when it lost star forward Andre Kelly (averages of 13.4 points, 8.4 rebounds) to an ankle injury against Southern California on Jan. 29.

Still, the Golden Bears weren’t very competitive against the Arizona schools and coach Mark Fox wasn’t happy after Saturday’s loss to Arizona.

“We got a little fatigued and made some costly errors there in the second half defensively,” Fox said. “Against a team with as much talent as they have, you cannot afford to do that.”

Cal point guard Joel Brown (knee) missed the Arizona contest and his status is undetermined. Guard Jordan Shepherd leads the Golden Bears with a 14.5 scoring average.

Washington State is led by guard Michael Flowers (14.2 ppg). Big man Mouhamed Gueye (ankle) was on crutches earlier this week, but Smith said he is fine.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

PlayAction Podcast

SGPN | The Propcast | Week 4 NFL Player Props

NFL

Munaf Manji (@SportsNerd824) & Rod Villagomez (@rjvillagomez) of @TheSGPNetwork offer 5 player props each for Week 4.

SGPN | NFL Week 4 Afternoon Games & SNF Betting Preview
SGPN | NFL Week 4 Afternoon Games & SNF Betting Preview

NFL

The @SGPNNFL Pod covers the Week 4 late games as @SportsNerd824 & @ReichelRadio break down all four, including Tampa Bay & Kansas City.

SGPN | NFL Week 4 Picks
SGPN | NFL Week 4 Picks

NFL

The @GamblingPodcast guys pick every week 4 NFL game against the spread, including two locks, a ML dog and a three-team teaser

JetNation | Zach to Return vs Steelers
JetNation | Zach to Return vs Steelers

NFL

This week, @JetNation hosts Dylan Tereman & Glenn Naughton break down the Bengals loss, the return of QB Zach Wilson & the Steelers game.

SGPN | Diehard Eagles | Jaguars-Eagles Predictions
SGPN | Diehard Eagles | Jaguars-Eagles Predictions

NFL

The @DiehardEagles52 guys talk Philly's win over Wentz & WAS, Hurts' domination, rising expectations, 2nd half struggles,& picks vs JAX

Inside Pack Sports Live | NC State-Clemson Preview
Inside Pack Sports Live | NC State-Clemson Preview

NCAAF

The @InsidePackSport staff looks at tonight's NC State-Clemson showdown, matchups on both sides of the ball, key players & much more!

Buckeye Huddle | Is Michigan Football On Upset Alert & More
Buckeye Huddle | Is Michigan Football On Upset Alert & More

NCAAF

Tony Gerdeman of @BuckeyeHuddle joins host Tom Orr to break down Michigan-Iowa and the rest of this week’s biggest college football games.

SGPN | College Football Experience | Navy-Air Force Preview
SGPN | College Football Experience | Navy-Air Force Preview

NCAAF

SGPN's @TCEonSGPN previews Navy & Air Force. @TheColbyD is joined by AFA specialist @Falcon8fan of @HistoryFalcon to break it down.

SGPN | College Football Experience | Washington-UCLA Preview
SGPN | College Football Experience | Washington-UCLA Preview

NCAAF

SGPN's @TCEonSGPN previews Friday's Washington-UCLA game. @TheColbyD & @Scott_Bowser discuss whether Chip Kelly and UCLA will move to 5-0.