DaVonte Lacy seemingly couldn’t miss in Washington State’s final game at the Old Spice Classic. However, his teammates couldn’t find the basket as the Cougars gave up a late lead to fall 72-67 to St. Joseph’s and finish sixth in the Lake Buena Vista, Fla., tournament.
The game was a back-and-forth contest that saw the lead change hands 13 times.
WSU (3-4) held a 65-60 lead over the Hawks (4-2) with just over 4 minutes left following a jump shot by Que Johnson. But WSU shot just 1 for 7 from the field over the final 4 minutes to suffer its third single-digit loss in the past week.
“Coming out pretty well, we took the lead in the second half and sustained it for most of the half,” coach Ken Bone said in a radio interview. “Then at the end they did a great job and they were just better the last 5 minutes than we were.”
After a 76-69 loss to Butler on Friday to begin the tournament, the Cougars beat Purdue 69-54. The previous Sunday WSU lost 64-62 to Texas Christian at home.
Lacy led the team with 25 points on 9-of-14 shooting. The rest of the team combined to hit just 16 of 40 shots, including 5 of 15 from behind the 3-point arc. Lacy, who scored 20 or more points in four of the team’s seven games, hit 5 of 9 3-point attempts.
“DaVonte’s done a great job. We talked about that in the locker room, making sure the team understands that he’s a go-to guy,” Bone said. “We’re not going to go to him every time down the floor, but he’s a real priority.”
The only other Cougar to score in double digits was Johnson, with 10, all in the second half.
It was the battle inside where the Cougars were outmanned, giving up a 37-27 rebounding advantage to the Hawks. Starting forward D.J. Shelton struggled to score, shooting 1 of 8 and missing all four of his 3-point attempts.
Forward Ronald Roberts led the way for SJU with 21 points and 10 rebounds while making 75 percent of his shots. DeAndre Bembry and Langston Galloway added 13 points apiece.
The Hawks took a 34-28 lead at halftime by outscoring the Cougars in the paint 18-6. WSU countered by playing forwards Shelton and Josh Hawkinson more after halftime, and played nearly even inside from that point on.
But Junior Longrus had four fouls by halftime, and center Jordan Railey struggled to match the productivity he showed in WSU’s win over Purdue. Railey finished the game with four fouls and played much of the second half in foul trouble.
“It made it difficult but I thought Junior Longrus played an outstanding game even though he was in foul trouble,” Bone said. “I thought Jordan wasn’t able to get the touches he wanted because on Friday he was 6 of 7 (shooting), I thought he played really well. Tonight he’s 2 for 2. We didn’t take advantage of that as much as we needed to.”
(21) Memphis 73, (5) Oklahoma State 68: Shaq Goodwin had 17 points, Joe Jackson hit four key late free throws and the Tigers beat the Cowboys (7-1) in the championship game.
Memphis (5-1) held Oklahoma State preseason All-American Marcus Smart to 12 points.
In the first meeting this season between the Top 25 teams on Nov. 19, Oklahoma State won handily over Memphis, getting 39 points from Smart in a 101-80 win.
Smart turned the ball over with Oklahoma State trailing by one with 11 seconds left, and fouled Jackson, who made two free throws to make it 71-68.
Oklahoma State’s bid to tie it ended when Smart had another turnover in the final seconds and Jackson connected on two more free throws as Memphis took a 73-68 lead.
LSU 70, Butler 68 (OT): Johnny O’Bryant III scored 17 points as the Tigers (5-2) beat the Bulldogs in overtime to capture third place.
Purdue 68, Siena 63: A.J. Hammons scored 16 points, Basil Smotherman had a late tiebreaking dunk, and the Boilermakers (6-2) beat the Saints (2-7) in the seventh-place game.