Cougs play a complete game in win over UTEP

WASHINGTON STATE put away UTEP's hopes of a comeback early in the second half, building a double-digit lead and increasing the advantage down the stretch. Two WSU big men figured prominently in the Cougs’ 84-68 win.

Josh Hawkinson’s double-doubles have become so commonplace it’s a surprise if he doesn’t post one. Hawkinson had 17 points and 14 rebounds in the win, his fifth double-double of the season as WSU moved to 6-2. It is the 25th double-double of his career.

Center Conor Clifford was perfect on the night -- 5-for-5 from the field and 5-for-5 from the free throw line. He scored 15 points in 16 minutes and committed no turnovers.

But the Cougs' defense shouldn't be overlooked in the win.  UTEP shot 37 percent from the floor and 23 percent from 3-point range. WSU posted a season-high nine blocks on the night.

Derrien King had a career-high 10 points in his first action since Nov. 28. Que Johnson chipped in 11 points and Charles Callison and Ike Iroegbu had 13 combined assists with seven and six, respectively.

WSU shot 55 percent from the floor (25 of 47) a season high, as was its  shooting from beyond the arc (50 percent, 8 of 16).

Finals begin tomorrow at Washington State, with just 1,917 fans on hand Sunday.  WSU next hosts Texas State Friday at 6 p.m. at Beasley.

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