The Washington State Cougars cruised past the Eastern Washington Eagles with a barrage of threes in a 82-56 victory in Spokane.
It was a game WSU (2-2) needed to not only win, but win with some confidence. The Cougars did just that with 15 threes, eight of them from Jabe Mullins, and never let EWU (1-4) lead at any point in the game.
Threes was theme early and often for WSU. Mouhamed Gueye and Mullins got the party rolling with a pair of threes for the games first points. Gueye, Mullins and Justin Powell teamed up for WSU’s first 23 points as the Cougars opened up a 23-9 lead halfway through the first half. After a rough two game stretch, Gueye feasted early with nine points and five rebounds in the first half.
The Cougars played fairly clean basketball early on, only turning the ball over twice and their defense held the Eagles to just 21 first half points. EWU tried to keep up with WSU’s aerial assault from downtown but could only muster two threes on 15 attempts in the first half. The Cougars entered the half up 15 but the nightmares of last years Eagles comeback still lingered in the back of the minds of WSU.
Exit second half collapse worries, enter the Jabe Mullins half.
Mullins entered Monday night’s contest just three of 11 from beyond the arc. He matched that total in the first half, then turned into a human torch in the second half. Mullins hit five of six shots from beyond the arc for 15 of the Cougars first 21 points in the second frame.
T.J. Bamba and Powell got in on the splash party with threes of their own to help extend WSU’s lead up to 24. The Cougars kept their foot on the gas and accelerated to the tune of 46 second half points to capture a much needed 26-point victory in Spokane.
Mullins finished with a game high of 24 points. All coming from beyond the arc. Gueye and Powell snapped their two game funks with solid performances, combining for 31 points and 15 rebounds. Powell also tacked on seven assists.
The Cougs return back to Pullman this upcoming Friday at 1 P.M. to take on the Detroit Mercy Titans. Plan accordingly if you’re wanting to get your fix of WSU basketball in during Apple Cup weekend.