After losing the likes of Tia Presley, Lia Galdeira and Shalie Dheensaw off of last season's women's basketball team, there were plenty of question marks coming into the 2015-16 season. Freshman forward Borislava Hristova has shown through four games that she is going to be the answer for the Cougars this season, and the future.
Hristova -- a Varna, Bulgaria, native -- is leading WSU in scoring with 18.5 points per game and is coming off a pair of strong performances that helped the Cougs claim the Rainbow Wahine Classic title last weekend. Her performances in Hawaii netted her the Pac-12 freshman of the week award.
She averaged 19.5 points in games against Hawaii and Nevada in the tournament and shot 57 percent from the field on her way to being named the tournament MVP. Steady, efficient production has been that standard set by Hristova on what to expect from her this season.
Her 23 points against Nevada were a season high and came on 11-of-17 shooting. She is shooting an astounding 57 percent on the season and has been able to stretch the floor with a her 3-point shot, making 7 of her 14 threes through four games.
Before coming to WSU, Hristova, had a tremendous amount of success playing for the Bulgarian National team against top European competition . She was named the MVP of the FIBA U16 European championship, and the Bulgarian MVP at the U18 competition, averaging well over 20 points a game in both tournaments.
It appears that Head Coach June Daugherty has gotten another special player to bring her talents to Pullman. Fans knew it was going to be hard to replace all the talent from last season's team, but Hristova's stellar start has brightened the future for WSU women's basketball.
Hristova and the rest of the Cougars will be back in action on Nov. 27, Black Friday, against San Jose St. in Beasley Coliseum. The game will tip off at 7 p.m. and can be streamed at wsucougars.com.
The men's cross country team traveled to Louisville to race in the NCAA Championships over the weekend. The Cougars finished 26th out of 31 teams. Sophomore Michael Williams was the first Coug to cross the finish line with a time of 30:39.5. Williams' time was good enough to be the 57th best time of the day. Junior John Whelan was the next Coug to finish in 113th place.
Syracuse took home the team title, and Oregon's Ed Cheserek won his third consecutive individual title. There have only been three runners to match Cheserek's feat: Steve Prefontaine of Oregon, and Cougs Gerry Lindgren and Henry Rono.
The 26th place finish wasn't the best case scenario for a WSU team that seemed to be peaking after a fourth place finish at the NCAA West regional race two weeks ago. The team got championship expereince, however, and brings back a lot of talent to next year's squad.
"We had a great season and just couldn't quite finish it off we way wanted," WSU Director of Cross Country/Track & Field Wayne Phipps said. "To be 26th in the nation, and then return everyone including only one junior, shows we have a very bright future."
The Cougar swim team had a strong showing in Ohio over the weekend and has earned itself a ranking. WSU was ranked 26th by collegeswimming.com and senior Presley Wetterstrom has the nation's 12th best time in the 200 breaststroke. This recognition comes after a fourth place finish in the Ohio State Invitational last weekend.
The Cougs raced against No. 5 Florida, No. 7 Kentucky, No. 11 Ohio State, and No. 41 Miami in the competition. The team will next be in action Dec. 5 at Seattle U.