Kind of thought the lead to my story in Tuesday’s paper said it all about this one:
A memorable season had a forgettable ending for the University of Wyoming men’s basketball team.
That ending was a 61-41 loss to Washington State here at Beasley Coliseum Monday night in a second-round CBI game.
It was a battle of frontcourts as Leonard Washington and Adam Waddell combined for 27 points for UW. But Brock Motum and Abe Lodwick combined for 41 points and 14 rebounds for Washington State. UW had now answer for Motum, a 6-10 lefty from Australia. Lodwick is 6-7 and made four 3-pointers.
UW’s guards were non-factors. Starters JayDee Luster, Francisco Cruz and Luke Martinez had just eight pointson 3 of 20 shooting.
Coach Larry Shyatt said it was the physical play of Washington State. Cougars coach Ken Bone said it was his team fighting through screens. Whatever it was, UW couldn’t knock down a perimeter shot to save its life.
Hated to see true freshman forward Larry Nance Jr. get ejected after two technicals late in the game after he at Motum went after a rebound. Motum may have baited Nance into it, but better day are to come for Nance.
The game was chippy and physical throughout. Washington State was 21 of 29 from the free-throw line and UW was 7 of 11. Was the officiating great? No, but that wasn’t why UW lost. It’s struggles shooting the ball took care of that.
Shyatt said true freshman forward Tyrone Marshall’s absence from this trip was due to academic reasons. Shyatt wanted him to concentrate on his school work during this time, which could have stretched into five days had UW won.
Tough way for the season to end, but 21 wins and a postseason appearance. Can’t say the CBI makes a lot of sense to me. If UW had won it still would have been on the road. It would have played at TCU and 1,000 people of TCU had won at Oregon State. That didn’t happen, but as someone told me before the game, you know what you’re getting into when you play in tournaments like this.
Well, it’s over now and time to hit the recruiting trail for the coaches and say goodbye to guys like Luster, Waddell and Cruz.
For more on the game, see Tuesday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang.