WSU earns win in Beasley

Men’s basketball earns win in first ever meeting with Weber State



WSU forward Efe Abogidi (0) dunks the ball during a college basketball game against Weber State University at Beasley Coliseum, Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021, in Pullman.

TOM ABBOTT, Evergreen sports editor

The Cougs snapped Weber State’s flawless start to the season with a dominant second-half performance in the 94-60 win on Wednesday night in Beasley Coliseum.

WSU had a slow start against Weber State, but bounced back with a 10-0 run half way into the first half to put the Cougs up 22-13. 

Weber State responded with a 7-0 run of their own to bring the game back to a difference of three points with WSU still winning 26-23.

WSU changed the momentum yet again by going on a 7-0 run to end the first half up 35-24. WSU played great defense during this stretch, forcing Weber State to take poor shots and scramble around the court.

The Cougs kept the pressure on Weber State in the second half, beginning the last 20 minutes of the game by adding to the lead, 46-29. WSU then added to their lead again with about 13 minutes left, up 53-34. The deficit was too much for Weber State to come back from as a Cougar victory became clear. WSU piled onto their lead to end the game up by 34 points.

The Cougs shot 58 percent from the court and an impressive 59 percent from three-point range. WSU recorded a season-high 19 assists in the game as well.

The depth of the Cougars roster proved to be effective once again with five players scoring over 10 points. 

Noah Williams led the WSU offense with 17 points. Wednesday’s game is William’s seventh-straight game with over 10 points.

“He assumed the point guard duties,” WSU head coach Kyle Smith said about Williams. “He made a lot of plays and did a good job there.”

Cougars’ forward Mouhamed Gueye had his first double-double performance against Weber State. Through the first 20 minutes of the game, Gueye totaled six rebounds including four offensive rebounds resulting in second chance points. Gueye finished the game with 14 points, 10 rebounds and one block.

WSU’s TJ Bamba finished the Cougar victory with 14 points, two rebounds and one assist. Bamba started his first game of the season against Weber State. As predicted, he matched up against Weber State’s leading scorer Koby McEwen. Bamba continued to play his aggressive style of defense against McEwen. Bamba also had his first dunk as a Coug against Weber State.

“I’ve never caught a dunk in a game before,” Bamba said. “Once I did it, I went to the bench and they all started smiling. Everybody was just happy I finally dunked.”

D.J. Rodman had a standout night on offense, shooting a flawless 4-4 from three-point range and 5-5 overall. Rodman also picked up four rebounds to help the Cougs to victory off the bench.

Michael Flowers put up 13 points for the Cougs. Flowers shot 3-7 from three-point range and ended the game hot, making all four of his last shots.

The Wildcats had four players score more than ten points in the loss. Forward Dillion Jones led with 16 points and seven rebounds. McEwen and JJ Overton followed closely with 12 points each. Guard Seikou Sisoho Jawara finished with 11 points.

The Cougars outrebounded the Wildcats 24-13 in the first half and continued to dominate the paint with 19 rebounds in the second half for a total of 43 rebounds.

WSU played the game without forward Dishon Jackson. Jackson did not dress and was seen on the bench with a wrapped right hand. 

“Hoping to have him back Saturday,” Smith said about Jackson. “I think we will, but it’s just a matter of how much the swelling goes down.”

Andrej Jakimovski filled Jackson’s shoes close to the rim, matching up well against the Weber State forwards. Unlike Jackson however, Jakimovski is a threat from the perimeter, going 2-2 from range. Jakimovski finished the game with just six points after running into foul trouble with eight minutes left in the game. 

WSU guard Tyrell Roberts made his 24th straight free throw, tying WSU legend Klay Thompson for the most consecutive made free throws to start a career at WSU. Roberts finished the game with eight points.

Next up for the Cougs is a bus ride up to Spokane to play a modified “home” game against South Dakota State. The matchup takes place at noon on Saturday in the Spokane Arena.