Men’s basketball falls to New Mexico State 69-63

Despite strong performances of Franks, Elleby, Cougs lose second game of season

Then-junior+forward+Robert+Franks+Jr.+looks+for+an+open+pass+during+the+game+against+Utah+on+Feb.+17+at+Beasley+Coliseum.+Franks+and+freshman+forward+CJ+Elleby+combined+for+35+of+WSU%E2%80%99s+63+points+against+New+Mexico+State+on+Saturday.
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Men’s basketball falls to New Mexico State 69-63

Then-junior forward Robert Franks Jr. looks for an open pass during the game against Utah on Feb. 17 at Beasley Coliseum. Franks and freshman forward CJ Elleby combined for 35 of WSU’s 63 points against New Mexico State on Saturday.

Then-junior forward Robert Franks Jr. looks for an open pass during the game against Utah on Feb. 17 at Beasley Coliseum. Franks and freshman forward CJ Elleby combined for 35 of WSU’s 63 points against New Mexico State on Saturday.

ABBY LINNENKOHL | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

Then-junior forward Robert Franks Jr. looks for an open pass during the game against Utah on Feb. 17 at Beasley Coliseum. Franks and freshman forward CJ Elleby combined for 35 of WSU’s 63 points against New Mexico State on Saturday.

ABBY LINNENKOHL | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

ABBY LINNENKOHL | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

Then-junior forward Robert Franks Jr. looks for an open pass during the game against Utah on Feb. 17 at Beasley Coliseum. Franks and freshman forward CJ Elleby combined for 35 of WSU’s 63 points against New Mexico State on Saturday.

ALEX STEVENSON, Evergreen reporter

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WSU men’s basketball couldn’t bounce back from its slow start as it fell to New Mexico State 69-63 on Saturday. The Cougars failed to extend their win streak to four games as they traveled to play the Aggies.

The Cougars (4-2) got off to a slow start as the Aggies (6-1) opened the game on a 13-2 run going up 22-7 within the first 10 minutes of play.

WSU gave up five offensive rebounds in the first 10 minutes of the half which contributed to the Aggies seven three-pointers made by halftime.

However, at about the 10-minute mark of the first half the Aggies picked up a technical foul in a key momentum shift for the Cougars. After that, WSU was able to go on a 10-4 run of its own to get within three points of the Aggies.

The first half was filled with runs by both teams and the second half continued to be a back-and-forth affair. The Cougars kept close to New Mexico State, tying the game up twice and getting within one point five times.

The big difference, especially down the stretch and in crunch time, was turnovers. The Cougars committed 19 turnovers which contributed to 17 fast break points by New Mexico State.

WSU couldn’t come up with any late runs as it fell to the Aggies 69-63. Freshman forward CJ Elleby and senior forward Robert Franks Jr. led the way for the Cougars, combing for 35 of the team’s points and 23 of their 34 total rebounds.

The Cougars look to bounce back as they host Idaho at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Beasley Coliseum. The game can also be seen on Pac-12 Networks.