Tune up of turnovers for Cougs in exhibition

PULLMAN -- Tony Bennett's Cougars were their usual ball-hawking selves Sunday in a 80-42 exhibition victory over Lewis-Clark State. But the lopsided win wasn't sitting well with the game's leading scorer, junior forward Daven Harmeling. "I thought we had a lot of careless stuff tonight that needs to be cleaned up," he said matter-of-factly.

Specifically, Harmeling was talking about the Cougs' 18 turnovers. Last season WSU averaged a little more than 10 turnovers per game.

"That type of stuff always happens at the beginning of the year, but at the rate it was happening tonight ... I feel we're a little bit behind than where we should be," said Harmeling, a vocal team leader who hit on 7-of-10 shots from the field and finished with 17 points.

"We've got a long ways to come," he added. "A long, long ways.

Bennett said he challenged his team at halftime -- with the Cougs leading 39-21 -- to be more alert with the ball, noting that some guys listened, and some did not.


HARMELING: HIT 7-OF-10.

"We've got some room for improvement," he said. "There were some good things, balancing the minutes out there, but a few too many turnovers for my liking. We have some stuff to work on. It was good to see Caleb (Forrest) and Daven step up. LSCS is a scrappy team, they're very quick. They play a slightly different style than we were used to playing against in practice. Today we had to play a certain way, but we'll know soon enough how good we are. I don't think we can draw a whole lot from this game."

Forrest, a junior forward expected to assume some of Ivory Clark's old minutes, came off the bench to score 13. Aron Baynes, with 10 points, was the only other Cougar in double figures.

A calm crowd of about 2,000 looked on as the Cougs' defense and intense ball pressure set the tone. An early steal and dunk by senior Kyle Weaver energized the crowd and the team. Weaver finished with eight points, six assists and nine rebounds.

The starting five of Derrick Low, Taylor Rochestie, Weaver, Baynes and Robbie Cowgill got things going early after a three-pointer by Warrior guard Dorian Watson was the first basket of the game. Low responded soon after by sinking a three-pointer of his own.

Thirteen of the 14 Cougars in uniform up put points on the board.

WSU finished with 51 rebounds, compared to LC's 24. Of the 51 rebounds, 33 came on defense.

WSU plays a tight, man-to-man defense, but LC came in with a zone defense -- something Bennett said his team is not used to because they don't practice that defense.

NOTABLE NOTES:

  • Bennett said 6-9 freshman center Charlie Enquist will redshirt this season, and Abe Lodwick is a possibility to redshirt as well. Bennett will sit down this week with Lodwick and make a decision before Friday evening's season opener against Eastern Washington.

  • The Cougs shot an even 50 percent from the field. LC shot 29 percent.

  • Freshman Stephen Sauls entered the game in the second half, and finished with five points.

  • Point guard Taylor Rochestie had five assists and four turnovers.

  • Freshman center Fabian Boeke did not play. He is recovering from a back injury and awaiting NCAA clearance on his eligibility. He played on a club team in Germany that the NCAA says has a record of over-paying on the stipends it gives players. Bennett said there have been numerous players from the same club who who have been cleared by the NCAA in the past, maybe providing some hope for Boeke. With the foul trouble Robbie Cowgill found himself in Sunday, Boeke would be a welcome addition.


    POINT GUARD TAYLOR ROCHESTIE WITH 5 ASSISTS.



    SENIOR GUARD DERRICK LOW HEADS FOR TWO AGAINST L-C STATE.



    ROBBIE COWGILL FOUND FOUL TROUBLE.



    ARON BAYNES SCORED 10 POINTS.


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