There’s a more traditional game story in the post below. Here are the highlights:
Star of the game: Washington’s Isaiah Thomas scored a game-high 22 points. But his timing was as crucial as his totals, as he hit two big treys and several key free throws down the stretch. And as he pointed out after with a smile, he’s now 4-0 against the Cougs for his career.
Key stats: Washington outrebounded WSU, 42-35. Maybe more importantly, after giving up 12 offensive rebounds in the first half, UW allowed the Cougars only three more in the second. … The two teams’ top scorers on the season — Quincy Pondexter and Klay Thompson — combined for 12 points on 5-of-25 shooting from the field. … Washington survived 19 turnovers.
Key run: With Washington State up by two and the home crowd roaring, Scott Suggs drained a 3-pointer that returned the lead to the Huskies. Then Thomas built on it with four free throws and a trey of his own. Suddenly, UW was six points up again and had the lead for good.
UW quotable: “Tonight’s win, although it’s late in the season, in these last two games we still can draw from the experience. There won’t be a louder crowd in the next two games than they were here tonight. And with us not being able to knock shots down in the second half, I don’t know how much more adversity we could face with it being a close game, and yet we persevered. We can draw from that in the next couple of road games.” — coach Lorenzo Romar
WSU quotable: “Washington averages around 82 of 83 points a game. And for us to be able to hold them to 59 and 24 in the second half is impressive. … I think our guys are improving. I just wish we could improve our shooting. We’re working on the defensive end. We’re getting better there, and I don’t know if that’s taking our legs away from us because those same guys who are busting their tales on defense have to go out on the offensive end. So there’s sometimes a balance of what you want to emphasize. But they’re doing a good job defensively, and hopefully we start getting some baskets.” — coach Ken Bone
Bigger picture: Cal’s win earlier in the day officially dethroned UW as Pac-10 regular season champions. Meanwhile, WSU still has some climbing to do to get to seventh place and earn a first-day bye in the Pac-10 tournament.
Next for WSU: 7 p.m. Thursday at Oregon State.
Next for UW: 7 p.m. Thursday at Oregon, no TV.