Washington State Narrowly Misses Upset Of No. 9 Arizona
By NICHOLAS K. GERANIOS
Associated Press Writer
PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) - Even with Washington State coach Dick Bennett sidelined because of the flu, the Cougars played his brand of low-scoring, defensive basketball.
It wasn't quite enough against No. 9 Arizona.
Channing Frye hit a short jumper with 58 seconds left to lift the Wildcats to a 61-57 win over Washington State on Saturday.
With Bennett sick at home, assistant coach Tony Bennett, his son, made his head coaching debut.
'It's obvious that Dick and Tony have sold them on the value of good defense,' Arizona coach Lute Olson said after the Wildcats were held to 39 percent shooting and their lowest point total of the season.
Arizona (14-4, 6-3 Pac-10), coming off a shocking 96-83 loss at Washington on Thursday, came into the game averaging 88 points a game, tops in the nation.
The Wildcats relied on a dominating 45-24 edge in rebounding to win its 37th straight over Washington State. The Cougars had only five offensive boards.
'We should be able to hurt them inside with Frye,' Olson said of his 6-foot-11 center. 'Channing did a good job.'
Frye finished with 17 points, nine of them in the final 13 minutes. Mustafa Shakur and Salim Stoudamire added 11 points each, and Andre Iguodala had 10 points and 15 rebounds.
Marcus Moore led Washington State (9-10, 3-6) with 29 points. But he was scoreless over the final 5:45 as Stoudamire began to deny him the ball.
'Salim did an unbelievable job on Marcus in the final five minutes,' Olson said.
Moore, who broke out of a prolonged slump with his highest output of the season, agreed.
'They did a good job of not letting me get the ball,' Moore said. 'Instead of the 3-point line, they started picking me up at half court.'
No other player scored in double figures for the Cougars, who are last in the league with an average of 55 points a game.
'Nice one to leave me on, huh?' Tony Bennett said.
But the Cougars also put on one of their best performances of the season, leading 29-28 at halftime and forcing the Wildcats into 14 turnovers.
'These guys battled for my dad,' Bennett said. 'Our system can keep us in a game like this.
'We are not happy with the outcome, but we have to build on this.'
Iguodala had a slam dunk and followed with a 3-pointer to give the Wildcats a 37-34 lead to start the second half.
Moore hit consecutive 3-pointers to tie the game at 44 with 13:40 left.
Frye responded with a free throw and three field goals to help the Wildcats build a 51-46 lead. But the Cougars scored seven consecutive points, and Justin Bellegarde's layup tied the game at 53 with 4:42 left.
A pair of turnovers allowed Hassan Adams and Shakur to score two easy baskets to give Arizona a 57-53 lead.
Baskets by Isaiah Simmons and Thomas Kelati tied the score at 57 for WSU.
But Frye's short jumper gave Arizona a 59-57 lead with 58 seconds left. Simmons' 3-point attempt bounced off the rim and the Cougars were forced to foul.
The Cougars only shot three free throws in the game, making one. Arizona was 16-of-19 from the line.
Washington State has not beaten Arizona since Jan. 30, 1986. It's the longest streak by one team over another in the Pac-10.