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Eastern Washington University Basketball
Sports >  EWU basketball

Jacob Davison, Eastern Washington bounce back in win over Idaho State

UPDATED: Fri., March 5, 2021

Eastern Washington redeemed itself Friday at Reese Court, handling Idaho State 75-62 two days after the grind-it-out Bengals upset the Eagles and threw a curveball into their Big Sky Conference title hopes.

Jacob Davison enjoyed some vindication of his own.

Davison, the preseason Big Sky Most Valuable Player who was relegated to an off-the-bench role midseason, scored a game-high 18 points on Senior Night, his first start since Jan. 23.

The two-time All-Big Sky selection attacked the basket, was efficient from 3-point range (2 for 3) and got to work early, helping EWU (13-7, 12-3 Big Sky) jump out to a 19-5 lead.

“It felt good to be back out there with the guys and into a rhythm again,” said Davison, who moved to 10th on EWU’s all-time scoring list with 1,348 points.

EWU head coach Shantay Legans was happy to see Davison contribute on both ends of the floor. Previous defensive lapses led to a drop in playing time.

“We all know how good Jacob can be,” Legans said. “We want consistency from him on the defensive end, and he gave that to us today.”

Steady senior guard Jack Perry also concluded the regular season on a high note, tying a season high of 11 points and shooting 3 for 3 from beyond the arc. He also had three steals and three assists.

Perry, who has started all four seasons at EWU since he was recruited out of Australia, now has 148 career 3-pointers, 11th in Eagles history.

Davison and Perry combined for 29 points on 10-for-17 shooting to help the Eagles bounce back.

If EWU had swept Idaho State, it would have guaranteed the Eagles a second consecutive Big Sky title and the No. 1 seed in next week’s conference tournament in Boise.

Instead, the Eagles fell 68-63 on Wednesday, ending a nine-game winning streak and taking destiny out of their own hands in a three-team championship race.

EWU needs Southern Utah (18-3, 11-2) to lose at Portland State (9-11, 6-7) on Saturday and Weber State (17-5, 12-3) to lose to Northern Colorado (10-10, 6-8) to earn the top spot.

The regular-season title and No 1 seed for the tournament will be awarded to the team with the best conference winning percentage, a rule for the 2020-2021 season due to several cancellations.

“We’ll be watching tomorrow and be Portland State and Northern Colorado fans,” Legans said. “If (they lose), that’s great. If not, we’ll have a little bit a chip on our shoulder going in.”

If Southern Utah and Weber State both win, EWU will be the No. 3 seed. The top five teams get first-round byes in the conference tournament.

Idaho State (13-10, 8-6), led by second-year head coach and Central Valley graduate Ryan Looney, assured itself a bye with the upset of EWU on Wednesday, the Bengals’ second win over the Eagles in as many seasons and first win in Cheney since 2016.

Friday, a regular-season finale, was a different story.

EWU swiftly jumped out to a double-digit cushion and had a 22-point lead in the second half before cooling off, going scoreless for nearly 4 minute down the stretch.

Cold-shooting Idaho State (20 for 61), which came into the series ranked sixth in the country in defensive scoring (60.5 points per game), saw the Eagles put up 47 points in the first half.

Tyler Robertson had 13 points for the Eagles. Kim Aiken Jr. added 14 rebounds, three assists and three blocks.

“We all know how big of a letdown was on Wednesday,” Davison said. “But we had a great practice (on Thursday) and were ready today.”

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