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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Tuesday, July 16, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Staff news stories

Mike Sando

Mike Sando

covers men's sports at Washington State University, including Cougars football and basketball.



Spring Has Sprung For Cougs

Paul Mencke takes nutritional advice from a guy who weighs 300 pounds, so it might be a stretch to consider him the "logical" choice to become Washington State's next starting quarterback. But he's in the running, for sure. There was little doubt of that Monday as Mencke and the defending Pacific-10 Conference champions opened spring football practices in Martin Stadium. Mencke, the former two-sport star at Lewis and Clark High School, has added about 15 pounds to his 6-foot-5 frame. The 232-pounder has been a regular in the weight room this offseason, but he also credits his roommate, 300-pound lineman Joe Criscione, with giving him a nutritional edge.

SUNDAY, MARCH 29, 1998

SUNDAY, MARCH 22, 1998



Coaches Push Huskies

Bob Bender is used to making his case to the refs, but now the UW coach must turn his attention to NCAA Tournament selection committee members. Photo by Associated Press



Desales, Tekoa-Oakesdale Head To State

District 7-B The DeSales boys are going to the State B Tournament for the first time in 44 years and won't mind if anyone considers them a long shot, not after draining 12 of 20 3-pointers in Saturday night's 72-56 victory over Blue Mountain rival Waitsburg in a District 9-B elimination game at Friel Court. "After yesterday's victory (over Garfield-Palouse), the guys weren't going to be denied," Irish coach Joe Lesko said.

FRIDAY, FEB. 27, 1998

THURSDAY, FEB. 26, 1998


Inactive WSU Recruits Appear Worth The Wait

Two of Washington State's newest basketball recruits have yet to score a single basket this season, but there's no need to panic. Mike Bush, a senior at Kent-Meridian High School, and Ventura (Calif.) College sophomore Eddie Miller are sitting out this season. The 6-foot-6, 190-pound Bush averaged 20 points and 11 rebounds as a junior at Mercersburg (Pa.) Academy, but he cannot play this season because this is his fifth year in high school. The 6-8, 225-pound Miller played one season at Ventura before the program was discontinued. He'll have three years of eligibility at WSU.

SUNDAY, FEB. 22, 1998


Cougars Swamped By Cardinal Depth Charge

Playing 10thranked Stanford is a depth wish for undermanned teams like Washington State, a lesson the Cougars knew long before Saturday night's 72-56 loss at sold-out Maples Pavilion. For Stanford, depth means Ryan Mendez - ever hear of him? - coming off the bench to drill five 3-pointers, including four during a 6-minute span that helped the Cardinal take a 36-26 halftime lead.


Stanford Has Too Much Depth For Cougars Bench Performance Big Difference As Cardinal Defeats Cougars

Playing 10th-ranked Stanford is a depth wish for undermanned teams like Washington State, a lesson the Cougars knew long before Saturday night's 72-56 loss at Maples Pavilion. For Stanford, depth means Ryan Mendez - ever hear of him? - coming off the bench to drill five 3-pointers, including four during a 6-minute span that helped the Cardinal take a 36-26 halftime lead. "The last one he hit, I touched the ball," marveled WSU wing Chris Crosby. "I actually deflected it and it went in. Great shooter."

FRIDAY, FEB. 20, 1998

THURSDAY, FEB. 19, 1998


Osu Says It’s The Refs

Oregon State doesn't always play hard, as coach Eddie Payne and his players admitted following the Beavers' most recent defeat, an 80-68 loss at Washington State. And OSU rarely plays particularly well, as any statistical breakdown would suggest. Surely no team in the Pacific-10 Conference is so quick to fire the off-balance perimeter jump shot.

SUNDAY, FEB. 15, 1998


Cougars Go Two-For-Osu It’s No Cure-All, But WSU Will Take Second Pac-10 Win

1. OSU's Jerome Vaden runs into triple trouble as WSU's Kojo Mensah-Bonsu, left, Leif Nelson, middle, and Kab Kazadi create a turnover. Photo by Sandra Bancroft-Billings/The Spokesman-Review (color photo ran only in the Spokane edition) 2. Oregon State's Todd Marshall rejects the Cougars' Chris Crosby. Photo by Sandra Bancroft-Billings/The Spokesman-Review (black & white photo ran in the Spokane and Idaho editions) 3.Washington State center Brian Stewart battles Oregon State's Terrill Woods for a rebound. Photo by Associated Press (color photo ran only in the Regional edition) 4. Washington State's Kojo Mensah-Bonsu elbows Oregon State's Terrill Woods in the face on a drive to the hoop. Photo by Associated Press (black & white photo ran only in the Regional edition.)

FRIDAY, FEB. 13, 1998


Cougs Run Out Of Time Players Make Too Many Mistakes To Overcome Officials’ Lapse At End

It was unclear which was more painful, the ankle injury that knocked Carlos Daniel from the game with 10:42 remaining, or the late 3-pointer that sent Washington State to its eighth consecutive men's basketball defeat. "I think we're just kind of numb to it," point guard Blake Pengelly said. "We've had a lot of bad things happen to us so far. You get kind of used to it. It was nothing surprising." Oregon's 64-63 victory Thursday night at Friel Court provided the latest test to the Cougars' pain threshold. Given several chances to win in the final minutes, WSU didn't know what to do.

THURSDAY, FEB. 12, 1998


Perimeter Game Deserts Cougars

Washington State sophomore wing Chris Crosby, who sprained an ankle Saturday against Arizona, is questionable for tonight's home game against Oregon. His jump shot, like those of several teammates, remains doubtful at best.

SUNDAY, FEB. 8, 1998


Arizona’s Just Too Good Even At Slower Pace, Wildcats Able To Extend Streak Vs. WSU

It could have been worse. Much worse. Just ask Arizona State, which gave up 127 points to college basketball's defending national champs. Kansas State (125), Washington (112) and Morgan State (115) can also vouch for the potency of Arizona's unrelenting arsenal. For Washington State, then, there was no shame in Saturday night's 83-61 loss to the fourth-ranked Wildcats in McKale Center, a place where far better opponents have suffered far worse fates.

SATURDAY, FEB. 7, 1998

FRIDAY, FEB. 6, 1998


Sun Devils Scorch Struggling Cougs WSU’s Poor Shooting Paves Way To Sixth Consecutive Defeat

As an assistant basketball coach at Washington State from 1987-92, Don Newman helped Kelvin Sampson build the program into a postseason contender. Newman, now the interim head coach at Arizona State, felt a twinge of sadness Thursday after his surging Sun Devils handed the Cougars their sixth straight defeat, an 82-68 pounding before 6,032 fans in the University Activity Center.

THURSDAY, FEB. 5, 1998


No. 4 ‘Zona In A Zone

Arizona restored order to the Pac-10 with its humbling of previously unbeaten Stanford last week, leaving the Wildcats as clear favorites to end UCLA's three-year hold on the conference championship. "Stanford had a better record than us and people were trying to hype the game up," Arizona point guard Mike Bibby said, "but we're the national champions. People gotta knock us off."

SUNDAY, FEB. 1, 1998

FRIDAY, JAN. 30, 1998

THURSDAY, JAN. 29, 1998


Stanford-Arizona Has ‘Em Buzzing

Miles Simon and the Arizona Wildcats shouldn't have any trouble getting pumped up for tonight's game at Stanford. Photo by Associated Press

TUESDAY, JAN. 27, 1998