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Cougars put away suitcases

PULLMAN – Last week the Washington State men’s basketball team put together 40 minutes of impressive basketball, considering the opposition.

Shame they weren’t all in the same game.

The Cougars (8-10, 1-5 Pac-12) lost at Stanford and California by scores of 80-48 and 76-55, respectively. But their combined halftime deficit in the two contests was only 12 points, and would have been much lower if not for a late surge by the Cardinal.

“I felt like in both cases the opponent on their home court stepped their game up,” coach Ken Bone said during Tuesday’s Pac-12 teleconference. “I don’t want to say we played as well the second half as we did the first half, but I think Stanford and Cal had a lot to do with that. Both teams have lot of talent, both teams are good and I felt like they took their teams to another level and we weren’t able to match that.”

Living out of a suitcase may have had something to do with the Cougars’ wobbly legs in the latter halves of those games. WSU’s game today against Oregon State (10-7, 2-3) will be its seventh Pac-12 contest, yet just its second in Beasley Coliseum.

The Beavers will be venturing away from home for the first time in three weeks. OSU has just one road win this season, back in mid-November at Maryland. While that was a solid win for the Beavers, subsequent losses at DePaul, Akron and Hawaii indicate that OSU struggles away from Corvallis.

Bone also provided an update on injured guard DaVonte Lacy, the team’s leading scorer who is out with a rib injury. Lacy has only made one brief appearance on the court since before Pac-12 started, but has begun to practice with the team in a limited capacity.

“Just last night he went to the doctor’s office and he’s still at least 2-4 weeks out,” Bone said.

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