Let us revisit my burning questions for this game:
- Is Patty Mills back to form?
A: Yes. Yes. And yes. Although that little flop in the first half made me lose a whole lot of the respect I had for him.
- Can Baynes outperform Simpson under the basket?
A: No. No. And no.
- Can we keep St. Mary's off the free throw line?
A: Absolutely not. That 41.5% FT rate is unacceptable.
Still, it doesn't matter how it ends. It just ends. And for 95% of college basketball teams, it ends with a loss.
This, in so many ways, was a microcosm of our season. A disappointing start, with moments of brilliance down the stretch that made us believe we had a chance. Then, ultimately, a bittersweet ending. This was the life of the 2008-09 Cougs. At least we'll always have The Shot.
It is going to be weird to have to watch WSU basketball without Taylor Rochestie, Aron Baynes, Caleb Forrest and Daven Harmeling. Thanks. You meant so much to this program.
Player of the Game: Aron Baynes. 19 points, 10 boards.
Play of the Game: The Marcus Capers jumper to bring the Cougars within four with 6:39 remaining.
It was over when... Omar Samhan's jumper gave St. Mary's a 63-53 lead with 4:49 to play.
Stat of the game: Patty Mills' 27 points on 8 of 15 shooting, including 5 of 9 from three-point range. Our friends at the Zag blog warned us Patty Mills was streaky. We ended up on the wrong end of the streak tonight.