WSU falls short to Colorado in overtime

Evan Baron Evergreen Men's Basketball reporter

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Though it was a valiant effort by the WSU men’s basketball team, Colorado showed why they are ranked No. 15 in the country as they won a close game in Spokane against the Cougars by a score of 71-70.

The Cougars (7-8, 0-3) gave all they could against the Buffaloes (14-2, 3-0) and took them to overtime after WSU guard Que Johnson hit a 3-pointer to tie the game at 56.

Colorado executed better in overtime than the Cougars down the stretch by getting the ball to their big man Josh Scott, who scored six points in the extra minutes of the game.

“He’s really efficient, Scott knows how to get position, he’s big, he’s strong and once he gets it, like I said he’s really efficient with the ball,” WSU men’s basketball Head Coach Ken Bone said. “He’s a good player, he kind of had his way with us down the stretch and they (Colorado) did a nice job of understanding that, recognizing it.”

Scott finished the night scoring 19 points and had nine rebounds.

The big man’s play in overtime helped the Buffaloes edge to a six point lead which was the biggest lead of the game.

The Cougars cut the deficit to one point after a 3-pointer by Royce Woolridge with 0.3 left on the game clock.

Colorado guard Spencer Dinwiddie stepped to the free throw line and intentionally missed his last free throw attempt which prevented WSU from getting any type of shot off and sealed the Buffaloes third Pac-12 win of the season.

“That is a tough one to lose,” WSU guard Dexter Kernich-Drew said. “But it shows we were playing together as a team out there and we were fighting and that’s how we got to play every night if we’re going to have some success this year and get some wins.”

Even without their leading scorer DaVonte Lacy, the Cougars found a way to put points on the board. WSU guard Dexter Kernich-Drew took on Lacy’s role and scored a career high 24 points.

“It’s been very up and down this year, but I know that shots are going to drop sooner than later and you just got to keep practicing and not worry,” Kernich-Drew said.

Kernich-Drew finished the night 6-of-8 from long range, five of which came in the first half.

The hot shooting of Kernich-Drew helped the Cougars edge a six point lead at halftime.

However, the Buffaloes upped their defensive pressure which caused the Cougars to force up tough shots.

For the Buffaloes, the biggest play of the game came with 1:20 left in the second half when Xavier Talton swooshed a three point shot from the corner to give the Buffaloes a three point lead. The 3-pointer was Talton’s only basket of the game.

The Buffaloes had to rely on role players like Talton to help get the win over the Cougars, as their leading scorer Spencer Dinwiddie struggled the entire game and finished with only six points.

“We did a pretty good job defensively, and Dinwiddie for some reason did not have one of his better games,” Bone said.

Que Johnson finished the night with ten points scoring, but sat out most of the second half due to foul trouble.

“He’s a very unselfish player and we need him to actually be a bit more selfish,” Bone said

The Cougars will host the Utah Utes in Pullman on Sunday at 6 p.m. and will continue to look for their first Pac-12 win of the season.