CORVALLIS, Ore. – Another weekend, another game the Washington State men’s basketball team needs desperately to win if it is to maintain any hope of an encouraging season.
The Cougars (10-9, 1-5 Pac-12) enter today’s 2 p.m. game at Oregon State needing a win to maintain an above-.500 record. A win is also necessary to keep the Cougars ahead of the struggling Beavers (11-8, 1-5) in the Pac-12 standings.
OSU lost its first five conference games before taking a surprising 74-66 win over Washington on Wednesday. And the size and length of OSU frontcourt players Joe Burton (6-foot-7, 295 pounds), Eric Moreland (6-10, 215) and Devon Collier (6-8, 215) could cause the Cougars similar problems as when they faced a bigger, stronger Oregon team on Wednesday.
The Ducks outrebounded WSU 21-13 in the second half of a 68-61 Oregon win, a game WSU led by 10 at halftime.
“I think we need to just get back to finding a guy, our principles that allowed us to have a rebounding advantage early in the game and allowed us to get a lead early in the game,” freshman forward Junior Longrus said.
The venue, at least, has favored WSU in recent years. The Cougars won twice at Gill Coliseum last year, once in the regular season and then again in the College Basketball Invitational. WSU hasn’t lost at OSU since 2010, and has beaten the Beavers 11 of the last 14 times they’ve played.