Hoops Preview - Washington State

In the last in-state game of the regular season, the Washington Huskies (18-9, 8-7) )will travel east of the mountains to face-off against the Washington State Cougars (16-11, 6-9) Saturday night at 7 p.m. PST. The game will be televised via FSN, with Tom Glasgow leading the call, Lenny Wilkens doing the color and Jen Mueller will be on the sidelines.

The last time the two teams met, the Huskies had a special second half to spark a 92-64 victory at Bank of America Arena.

Although WSU was ahead at half 40-36, UW came out firing, pushing to a 56-24 lead behind the strong play of senior Quincy Pondexter, who finished with 29 points on 10 of 18 shooting and 12 rebounds.

Isaiah Thomas also played a big role in the win with 19 points on 6 of 11 shooting from the floor and 6 boards.

As a team, UW shot 47 percent from the field and 31 percent from beyond the arc. They also had an impressive 48 rebounds and only 9 turnovers.

Washington State, on the other end, were led by senior Nikola Koprivica, who had 13 points on 4 of 8 shooting and 11 rebounds.

Sophomore star Klay Thompson had an awful game shooting just 2 of 15 from the field, which was good enough for 7 points. He did however have 8 rebounds.

On the night, WSU shot 32 percent from the field and 30 percent from beyond the arc.

The Cougars started the season with an impressive six-game winning streak, and they were 10-2 overall in non-conference games with wins over Mississippi Valley State, Eastern Washington, IPFW, Alaska Anchorage, Nicholls State, San Diego, Idaho, Air Force, Portland State and LSU. They also have beaten Oregon State, Arizona, Stanford and USC in conference play. In fact, they have beaten the Wildcats and Trojans twice each this season.

Their losses have come against Gonzaga, Kansas State, Oregon, Arizona State, California, UCLA, Washington and Stanford. ASU, Cal and UCLA have beaten WSU twice this year.

Thompson has led the way for the Cougars with 20.1 points a game on 42 percent shooting from the floor and 35 percent from three. He also comes away with 1.5 steals a game.

Freshman point guard Reggie Moore has been stellar this year, averaging a solid 13.4 points per game on 46 percent shooting with 4.1 assists and 1.4 steals.

Making a contribution from the center spot has been sophomore DeAngelo Casto, who is averaging 10.3 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.2 blocks on 50 percent shooting.

As a team, WSU is averaging 73.2 points a game and allowing 71. They also average 34.8 boards and 13.7 turnovers a game.

The starting five for the Cougars is expected to be Moore, Xavier Thames, Thompson, Koprivica and Casto.

After this game, up next for UW will be their final road trip of the season - this one to the state of Oregon. They will play the Oregon Ducks (13-14, 5-10) at 7:00 p.m. PST Thursday night. It will be the Huskies last game at McArthur Court in Eugene, as the Ducks are expected to move into their new home for hoops, Matthew Knight Arena, in late 2010.

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