In what has become a familiar way to lose in the Ken Bone era, Arizona State -- one of the better shooting teams in the country coming into the game -- used an avalanche of three-pointers to bury WSU as the Cougars will come back home winless in Pac-12 play after a 66-47 loss to the Sun Devils.
Jermaine Marshall, who had shot 44 percent from deep entering the game, found himself with plenty of open looks and he made WSU pay, hitting 4-of-7 from beyond the arc on his way to a game-high 26 points. ASU shot 9-of-20 from three overall.
Conversely, the WSU offense continues to struggle. The Cougs posted a sub-40% effective field goal percentage for the third time in four games -- something they did just three times all of last season -- thanks largely to shooting just 5-of-19 from three.
WSU hoped to get a boost from the return of DaVonte Lacy, who played for the first time since his emergency appendectomy a week ago. That didn't go according to plan, either, as he scored four points and grabbed four rebounds, but he once again left the game early with what was reported to be a rib injury that is unrelated to his surgery.
The bright spot was the continued improvement of Que Johnson, who started for the third consecutive game even with the return of Dexter Kernich-Drew. He scored a team high 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting including 3-of-6 from beyond the arc.
Junior Longrus also continues to improve. While he'll likely never be a force scoring the ball, more games like this one -- 4 points, 5 offensive rebounds, 2 assists, 4 steals, 1 block -- should pay dividends for the Cougs down the road.
Still, this was another game where WSU was overmatched, and there was little today to make you think that a win is right around the corner. The Cougs' next game is in Spokane on Wednesday against a Colorado team that just swept the Oregon schools; that's virtually guaranteed to be sparsely attended in what should be a lifeless Spokane Arena. Their best shot at their first Pac-12 win before they host USC in a couple of weeks probably is Sunday against Utah.