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Cougs lose last-second overtime heartbreaker to Arizona State, 77-74

The Washington State Cougars fought back from a late deficit, but fell in overtime on a last-second winner.

NCAA Basketball: Washington State at Arizona State Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Remy Martin hit a game-winning 3-pointer with 0.4 seconds to go in overtime to give the Arizona State Sun Devils a 77-74 win over the Washington State Cougars on Saturday night in Tempe. The senior struggled with his shot for much of the night—going 7-23 on his way to 23 points—but he stepped into a 27-footer as WSU’s Ryan Rapp went under the screen and made the one that counted most.

WSU played the overtime period without Noah Williams, who fouled out late in the second half after scoring 15 points and dishing out six assists without a turnover. Jaz Kunc chipped in a career-high 15 points and nearly sent the game into a second overtime as his desperation three-quarter-court heave rimmed out. The junior, who has been having a strong stretch, also added eight rebounds.

A poor defensive rebounding effort combined with a turnover deficit ultimately doomed the Cougs. A much shorter ASU squad grabbed 30 percent of its own misses, well above its typical effort. WSU answered by pulling down 35 percent of its offensive rebound opportunities, but that wasn’t enough to overcome giving it away 16 times compared to Arizona State’s 11 turnovers.

That’s how a team loses while outshooting its opponent as the Cougs did—it just gets fewer shots up overall.

Arizona State started fast with seven quick points after the opening tip—fueled by an ASU offensive rebound and an Andrej Jakimovski turnover. Kunc ended the run with a nice drive to the basket, but ASU continued to roll buoyed by a long 3-pointer from Martin and carried a 14-5 lead into the first media timeout.

The Sun Devils wouldn’t score again for a long stretch, and WSU used a three-point play from Williams and a 3-point play from Dishon Jackson to pull close at 14-11 as the two teams huddled for the under-12 break.

It was then Wazzu’s turn to go cold, and it would be three more minutes before the Cougs scored again on a Kunc move inside to pull within 18-13. Then Abogidi checked in with a 3-pointer to trim ASU’s lead to two.

With Williams and Rapp on the bench, ASU extended its lead back out to 27-18 with just under six minutes to go in the half.

Rapp and Williams checked back in, and the Cougs answered again to hang close with seven straight, including free throws from Jackson, who went 7-7 at the line for the game. A corner 3 from Rapp and a post bucket from Williams would continue WSU’s hot stretch. Kunc then tied the game at 29 with a 3 of his own.

WSU grabbed its first lead moments later on a 3 from Rodman, but Verge answered right back to even things at 34. An out-of-bounds would follow, ending a long stretch of uninterrupted play and the final media timeout of the half coming with just 25 seconds to go. The Cougs ended the half with multiple tip efforts at the basket, but the two teams headed to halftime tied.

WSU seized the lead again after the break on another Kunc 3, and Williams tacked on another two points via a steal and breakaway to cap a 7-0 run.

Williams would head to the bench again after picking up his third foul on a questionable blocking call, stalling WSU’s offense and creating a gap in its perimeter defense. Martin went to work for six easy points in the midrange and at the free throw line. The Cougs’ lead was trimmed to 47-46 headed into the under-12 timeout.

The Sun Devils grabbed the lead back on the old “inbounds the ball off the defender’s back” move from Verge, and shortly after, Williams checked back out of the game after another blocking foul. Another ASU bucket would push its run to 8-0 and its lead to 50-47, drawing a timeout from Kyle Smith as his team’s scoring drought eclipsed five minutes.

The scoring drought continued, and the Sun Devils built their lead. Jaelen House buried a transition 3, then Jakimovsi fouled Holland Woods on a 3-point attempt. He hit all three chances to extend ASU’s lead to nine.

TJ Bamba attacked the basket on the ensuing possession, drawing a foul and hitting two free throws to mercifully end WSU’s scoring drought after more than seven minutes. The freshman followed it up with a transition bucket to cut his team’s deficit to five—he finished with 15 points on 5-7 shooting.

The Sun Devils answered right back with a pair of Martin free throws and a House steal and breakaway. Their lead was again up to nine with less than six minutes to play.

WSU didn’t fold. A 3-point play from Kunc pulled the Cougs within one at 62-61, but House answered with a critical 3-pointer to get ASU’s lead back to four. Jackson reeled it back to two with a pair of free throws. Williams tied it up with just over a minute to go on a baseline inbounds play.

He fouled out on ASU’s ensuing possession, sending Martin to the line for a pair of free throws to put Arizona State up by two. Rodman answered with two free throws of his own to tie it at 67 with 30.4 seconds to play.

Arizona State had a chance to take the lead with 10 seconds to play as it looked like Kimani Lawrence had an easy dunk. Dishon Jackson had other ideas as he came flying on a run from trapping at halfcourt, meeting Lawrence at the apex of his jump and denying him at the cup.

The Cougs recovered the rebound but were unable to get a shot up, and they went to overtime for the second time in three games.

ASU jumped out to a 72-68 lead in overtime on a Martin 3-pointer. Rodman pulled WSU back to within two with a pair of free throws as the Cougs looked to work him in the post against smaller defenders. Bamba then tied the game on a drive to the basket after a Rodman offensive rebound.

Martin set up Lawrence for another open look—this one he finished with a foul to give ASU the lead before missing the free throw. Bamba then came up big again, putting back a Rodman miss to even the score at 74. An ASU turnover gave WSU the ball back with 43 seconds to play.

The Cougs couldn’t take the lead as Rodman was blocked by Jalen Graham—his fourth of the night—on a baseline pull-up jumper. WSU needed another stop to extend the game. That stop didn’t come.

WSU and ASU will play again on Monday at noon PT. The game will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network.