Broncos trample Cougars

Bonton leads team with 19 points, Elleby scores 10 points, WSU make 14 tournovers in first road game



Freshman guard Noah Williams drives the ball toward the basket during the game against SU Nov. 7 at Beasley Coliseum.

RYAN ROOT, Evergreen reporter

The WSU men’s basketball team was defeated by the Santa Clara University Broncos 70-62 in Santa Clara, California, as the Cougars struggled to mitigate their turnovers and make shots from the field.

Head coach Kyle Smith returned to the Santa Clara (3-0, 0-0) arena Tuesday after coaching against the Broncos twice a year for the last three years with University of San Francisco.

WSU (1-1, 0-0) returned with defensive pressure against Santa Clara. The Cougars totaled 12 steals, forced 21 turnovers and scored 16 points off turnovers.

The Cougars made three turnovers in their win against Seattle last Thursday. On Tuesday night, WSU turned over the ball a total of 14 times, eight times in the first half alone.

Sophomore forward CJ Elleby came off a career high in points against Seattle University with 27 on 75 percent shooting.

On Tuesday night, Elleby struggled to maintain possession of the ball with five turnovers and scored 10 points while shooting 28 percent from the field. He fouled out of the game with under three minutes left in the game.

Junior guard Isaac Bonton led the Cougars in scoring with 19 points shooting 35 percent from the field while also contributing with four assists.

Time was stopped at 16:19 in the second half when redshirt senior guard Jaylen Shead was slow to get up from a rough landing underneath Santa Clara’s basket. He walked back to the bench and returned to the game about three minutes later. He was subbed out for the rest of the game with 11:56 left.

The deficit for the WSU Cougars kept growing larger as the second half progressed. Once the Cougars’ point total reached 44, it took them over six minutes to score again.

WSU attempted a comeback late in the game from being down by 14 points to reduce the Broncos’ lead to six points with 38 seconds left in the game. Bonton’s 3-point shot attempt with 33 seconds left in the game did not find the bottom of the net.

The Cougars finished with a 32.8 field goal shooting percentage and a 24.1 3-point shooting percentage. The Broncos ended with a 47.2 field goal shooting percentage and a 31.3 3-point shooting percentage.

The Cougars will return home to face the Idaho State Bengals at 1 p.m. Sunday at Beasley Coliseum in Pullman.