Against Cal on Wednesday, the Washington State men’s basketball team nearly beat an opponent that had toyed with the Cougars earlier in the year, falling in overtime.
Saturday, WSU (9-15, 2-10 Pac-12) will try to finish the job against Stanford.
The Cardinal (15-8, 6-5) beat the Cougars 80-48 in Palo Alto earlier this season. In that game, Stanford used a late run to take a 10-point lead at the half, and never let up, outscoring WSU 40-19 in the second half. But the previous game against Cal followed a similar script and on Wednesday the Cougars didn’t struggle in the second half, but actually outscored the Golden Bears 39-30.
In its first matchup with Stanford, WSU was outrebounded 37-23. But the Cougars have found a presence on the boards that could mitigate their disadvantage. D.J. Shelton is having a midseason breakthrough and is averaging 15.6 points and 11.9 rebounds over the team’s last seven games.
With Shelton’s inspired play of late and the return of leading scorer DaVonte Lacy, who is averaging 26.3 points in the four games since he returned from a rib injury, WSU just may have enough firepower to give the Cardinal a game.