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Sports >  NCAA basketball

Eastern Washington struggles to defend in loss to Sacramento State 81-75

Feb. 26, 2022 Updated Sat., Feb. 26, 2022 at 10:24 p.m.

From staff reports

Eastern Washington couldn’t take the 3-point shot away from upset-minded Sacramento State and paid the price.

Bryce Fowler scored 26 points, and William FitzPatrick and Zach Chappell complemented that effort with a combined nine 3-pointers for the Hornets in an 81-75 win over EWU in Sacramento, California, on Saturday night.

Sacramento State (9-16, 5-13 Big Sky) outscored the Eagles 39-21 from beyond the arc, and EWU (15-14, 9-9) was unable to overcome that deficit despite 27-for-54 shooting (50%) from the floor and a 38-29 rebounding edge.

FitzPatrick made five 3-pointers and finished with 20 points, and Chappell scored all 12 of his points from distance.

It was Fowler, in particular, who led the Hornets in the second half after they trailed 37-35 at halftime. He scored 19 points on 8-for-10 shooting over the final 20 minutes.

Linton Acliese gave EWU its final lead with a layup for a 59-58 edge with 7 minutes left in the game. The Hornets countered with an 8-0 spurt over the next couple minutes – Chappell drilled two 3-pointers in that stretch – to seize a 66-59 lead and never trailed again.

The Eagles got as close as 76-73 following Rylan Bergersen’s two free throws with 30 seconds left, but Sacramento State made all five free throws down the stretch to close it out.

Ethan Price led the Eagles with 18 points, and Bergersen ended with 17 points and a team-high eight rebounds. Steele Venters made three 3-pointers in a 15-point outing, and Angelo Allegri added 12 points.

EWU hosts Northern Arizona on Thursday at Reese Court in Cheney at 6 p.m.

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