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Tuesday, July 23, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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The day after Colorado

When a game goes to double-overtime, there are more storylines than can fit in one gamer. Let's take a look.

Change coming at point guard? Ernie Kent hinted as much after the game. Ny Redding got a little extra burn yesterday, playing 33 minutes with Charles Callison out. It's not even so much that Redding played well, hitting a couple big shots, securing some critical offensive rebounds and generally running the offense to Kent's liking.

But after the game, Kent said that the Cougars may consider slowing down their pace and playing a style more in tune with Redding's strengths than those of Callison, who is one of the team's best athletes.

If the Cougars do indeed slow down and keep Redding at the helm, he will need to improve his post-entry passes. Those were still an area of weakness for the point guard yesterday, and an area where improvement could have significant team-wide impact considering how successful Conor Clifford is near the basket when he makes a quick, decisive move.

Que Johnson's best game. And not just because it was his highest-scoring ever. Kent drew up a couple plays early in the game to get Johnson open looks after double screens, but after the game Johnson resisted when asked if those initial shots got him going. And looking back, he was right. Johnson got himself going by playing a more aggressive brand of basketball than he's showed in the past, even on defense.

Johnson was more willing in yesterday's game to attack the basket, which is why he shot 13 of WSU's 19 free throws. Put it another way; CU shot more than twice as many free throws as WSU yet Johnson still led both teams in free throw attempts.

Josh Hawkinson will score the basketball. So will Ike Ireogbu, usually. WSU has badly-needed a third scorer and Johnson, with his size and skill, has always been the preferred candidate. If this new attacking attitude is more than a blip, the WSU offense will greatly benefit this year and next.

Postgame notes:

-- Josh Hawkinson missed WSU's game against Arizona State last week but played 45 minutes in his return, scoring 18 points and collecting 13 rebounds (and four assists) to collect his 17th double-double of the season.

-- Brett Boese had a season-high 13 points on just seven shot attempts.

-- The Cougars have not yet won a road game this season.

-- WSU is just 1-2 in overtime games this season, but is still 4-2 in such games under Kent.
Game coverage:

-- Here is my story from the game, and an opposing story from the Denver Post.

-- And here is the story from the Associated Press.

-- On the blog last night we put up postgame videos of Kent, Redding and Johnson, as well as this box score.




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Jacob Thorpe
Jacob Thorpe joined The Spokesman-Review in 2013. He currently is a reporter for the Sports Desk covering Washington State University athletics.

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