Washington State Hosts UC Riverside In Season Opener

Nov. 17, 2005

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PULLMAN, Wash. -- The Washington State men's basketball team opens its 2005-06 season at Friel Court in Pullman, Saturday Nov. 19 against UC Riverside. Game time is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.

ABOUT THE HEAD COACHES: Dick Bennett is 25-32 in two seasons at Washington State...owns a 479-289 career record (.624) in 27 collegiate seasons...guided Wisconsin to 2000 Final Four...Dave Spencer is making his collegiate head coaching debut Saturday.

SERIES WITH THE HIGHLANDERS: Saturday's game marks the first meeting on the hardwood between Washington State and UC Riverside.

WSU AGAINST THE BIG WEST CONFERENCE: The Cougars are 7-2 all-time against current members of the Big West Conference, including 5-0 at home...last meeting was a 91-53 win over UC Irvine, Dec. 2, 1997.

CONTRAST IN STYLES: UC Riverside and WSU like to play at very different tempos...Highlanders have implemented a new offense this year and the result was a 162-126 exhibition victory over Redlands...UCR took 114 shots in the game and was 9-for-30 from 3-point range...WSU finished sixth nationally in scoring defense last season at 56.9 points per game...fewest points given up by a Pac-10 team since Oregon State s 55.8 in 1983-84...Beavers mark prior to shot clock and 3-point line in college basketball.

SEASON OPENERS: Washington State has won three straight season openers...Cougars have won 17 consecutive Friel Court openers...last loss was 60-54 to BYU, Dec. 3, 1987...UC Riverside has lost its last five season openers...Highlanders have dropped their last six road openers.

COUGARS NEAR PERFECT IN NOVEMBER: Washington State is 22-0 all-time in November at Friel Court...Cougars have won 23 straight November games in Pullman and are 25-1 all-time...only loss was 77-47 to Colorado State, Nov. 30, 1963.

PROTECTING THE HOUSE: In the last 15 seasons, the Cougars are 65-3 in Pullman against nonconference opponents...mark includes a 5-0 record in Bohler Gym during the 1990-91 campaign.

THIS DATE IN COUGAR HISTORY: Washington State opened its 2004-05 season with a 59-42 win over Montana State, Nov. 19...fewest points given up by the Cougars in an opener since a 66-34 win over Whitworth in 1948-49...Daven Harmeling scored 10 points off the bench in just 13 minutes, the most points by a true freshman in a Cougar opener since Mike Bush had 14 in 1998-99.

WSU PLAYED CLOSE GAMES: In 2004-05, the Cougars played 12 games decided by three points or less, tied with Fresno State for most in the country...WSU was 4-8 in those games and 0-4 in overtime...below is a breakdown of those games.

• Jeff Varem s dunk with two seconds left gave Cougars 37-36 win at Idaho, Nov. 30.
• Josh Akognon s 3-pointer at the buzzer fell short in 54-52 loss to No. 25 Gonzaga, Dec. 7.
• Cougars made 5-of-6 free throw attempts in final 39 seconds of 49-46 win over BYU, Dec. 11.
• Robbie Cowgill scored WSU s last four points in final 1:20 of 55-54 win at Portland, Dec. 18.
• WSU lost 49-47 at Wyoming despite outscoring Cowboys 12-4 in final 3:53, Dec. 22.
• Cougars lost 80-77 in double overtime at UCLA, Jan. 6.
• Oregon tallied last five points of the game in final 41 seconds to defeat WSU 55-52 in Pullman, Jan. 15.
• WSU was 9-for-21 at the foul line in 68-62 loss at Arizona State, Jan. 27.
• Thomas Kelati scored five points during 7-0 Cougar run in final 1:13 of 70-63 win at No. 11 Arizona, Jan. 29.
• UCLA Dijon Thompson nailed a 3-pointer at the buzzer in regulation and hit game-winning shot with 41 seconds left in overtime as Bruins defeated Cougars 58-56 in Pullman, Feb. 3.
• Oregon scored last four points in final 1:01 of 69-66 win over WSU in Eugene, Feb. 12.
• Cougars lost 57-56 in overtime against No. 9 Arizona, Feb. 24.
• Chris Schlatter scored a 3-pointer with nine seconds left in 57-55 win over Arizona State, Feb. 26.
• Thomas Kelati s 3-pointer with seven seconds left forced overtime at California, March 5...Cougars lost 63-57.
• Cougars dropped 60-58 decision to Stanford in first round of Pacific-10 Tournament, March 10...Chris Schlatter s shot at the buzzer missed its mark.

STREAKS BROKEN IN BENNETT ERA: In two seasons under Dick Bennett, the Cougars have accomplished several firsts and broken many losing streaks...here is a look at the achievements.

• Won 57-51 at Alaska Fairbanks, Nov. 22, 2003 to break 27-game road losing streak.
• Won 55-50 at California, Jan. 4, 2004 to break 31-game losing streak in California, 22-game Pac-10 road losing streak, six-game skid to Golden Bears and eight-game slide at California.
• Won 76-61 over USC in Spokane, Jan. 10, 2004 to halt nine-game losing streak to USC.
• Won 55-48 at UCLA, Feb. 5, 2004 for first win at UCLA in 47 games, including 39 at Pauley Pavilion...broke 22-game losing streak to UCLA.
• Won 60-51 at USC, Feb. 7, 2004 to snap seven-game losing streak at USC...first season sweep of USC since 1985-86...completed first road sweep of Los Angeles schools in WSU history.
• Won 60-51 vs. Stanford in Spokane, Dec, 31, 2004 to break 17-game losing streak against Cardinal.
• Won 70-63 at No. 11 Arizona, Jan. 29, 2005 to break 38-game losing streak against Arizona...stopped 20-game losing streak at Arizona...first win in 35 tries against a ranked Arizona team...halted a 26-game road losing streak against ranked opponents and a 48-game skid overall against top 25 teams...highest ranked opponent defeated on the road in school history.
• Won 59-48 at Stanford, March 3, 2005 to break eight-game losing streak at Stanford...first home-and-home sweep of Stanford since 1992-93.

STATISTICAL TRENDS: WSU is 15-2 under Dick Bennett when holding the opponent to under 40 percent shooting from the field, including 8-2 in 2004-05...Bennett s Cougars are 16-0, including 7-0 in 2004-05, when outrebounding their opponent.

TEAMS DO NOT EXCEED FIFTY-FIVE: Dick Bennett has been the Washington State men s basketball coach for 57 games...in 27 of those, the Cougar opponent has scored 55 points or less...from 1993-94 through 2002-03, WSU held a total of 26 opponents to 55 points or less.

WSU EXTENDS 3-POINT STREAK: The Cougars have made at least one 3-pointer in 281 consevutive games...last time Cougars did not make a shot from beyond the arc was Feb. 18, 1995 at Oregon...since 3-point line was adopted in 1986-87, WSU has failed to make a 3-pointer three times...other two occasions were Jan. 5, 1987 at Idaho and Dec. 9, 1988 at home against Portland.

COUGARS START FRESHMEN: Prior to the 2004-05 season, WSU had never started three true freshmen in a game...Cougars did it seven times last season...Robbie Cowgill (Austin, Texas), Derrick Low (Honolulu) and Chris Henry (Santa Ana, Calif.) started in WSU s 49-46 win over BYU, Dec. 11...Cowgill, Low and Kyle Weaver (Beloit, Wis.) started in the Cougars 49-47 loss at Wyoming, Dec. 22 and in each of the four games from Jan. 8-23...Low, Weaver, and Daven Harmeling (Grand Junction, Colo.) started in the Cougars 69-66 loss at Oregon, Feb. 12...first time in school history that five WSU true freshmen made at least one start in a season...true freshmen combined for 51 starts, most in WSU single-season history.

FRESHMEN CONTRIBUTION: Washington State s roster featured eight freshmen, including a pair of walk-ons...combined, Cougar freshmen accounted for 41.8 percent of WSU s scoring...Robbie Cowgill led the newcomers in points with 169...Cowgill led WSU with 26 blocks, second most all-time by a Cougar freshman in a season...Austin, Texas native became fourth freshman in WSU history to have a perfect day from the field (minimum five attempts) when he was 5-for-5 vs. USC, Feb. 5...Derrick Low led Cougar freshmen in scoring average with 6.9 points per game...his 63 assists ranked sixth on the Cougar single-season freshman list...his four steals at Arizona State, Jan. 27 and eight assists vs. USC, Feb. 5 were the most in a game by a WSU freshman since the 2000-01 season.

WSU RETURNEES: The Cougars returning players accounted for 56 starts and 44.4 percent of WSU s scoring in 2004-05...Cougars were 12-16 last season and lost to Stanford in the first round of the Pacific-10 Tournament...sophomore Derrick Low is WSU s leading returning scorer after averaging 7.0 per game in 2004-05, the eighth best mark by a freshman in Cougar history.

COUGARS KNOCK OFF WARRIORS IN EXHIBITION GAME: Sophomores Josh Akognon and Kyle Weaver each scored 13 points to lead Washington State past Lewis-Clark State 66-36 in an exhibition game, Nov. 15...freshman Chris Matthews added 11 points for the Cougars...WSU was sizzling from the field early, making eight of its first 11 field goals...Cougars led 31-19 at the intermission...Cougars opened the second half on a 25-5 run, holding the Warriors to one field goal in the first 12 minutes of the second half.

SCHEDULE MAGNET GIVEAWAY: The first 4,000 fans attending Saturday s game against UC Riverside will receive a Washington State basketball magnet schedule.

When Washington State:

• Plays an overtime game: 0-5
• Plays a live television game: 9-20
• Leads at the half: 18-9
• Trails at the half: 6-23
• Tied at the half: 1-0
• Shoots under 40 % FG:5-17
• Shoots 40-44 % FG: 4-10
• Shoots 45-49 % FG: 11-5
• Shoots 50 % or better FG: 5-0
• Opponent shoots under 40 % FG: 15-2
• Opponent shoots 40-44 % FG: 5-11
• Opponent shoots 45-49 % FG: 5-11
• Opponent shoots 50 % or better FG: 0-8
• Makes 0-4 three-pointers: 6-10
• Makes 5-7 three-pointers: 12-14
• Makes 8 or more three-pointers: 7-8
• Shoots more FTs than its opponent: 15-3
• Shoots less FTS than its opponents: 9-29
• Shoots same FTS as its opponent: 1-0
• Has more rebounds than opponent: 16-0
• Has less rebounds than opponent: 8-32
• Has the same rebounds as opponent: 1-0
• Has less than 10 TOs: 2-7
• Has 10-15 TOs: 19-15
• Has more than 15 TOs: 4-10
• Opponent commits less than 10 TOs: 2-2
• Opponent commits 10-15 TOs: 13-19
• Opponent commits more than 15 TOs: 10-11
• Scores less than 50 points: 2-11
• Scores 50-59 points: 7-13
• Scores 60-69 points: 11-7
• Scores 70-79 points: 4-1
• Scores 80-89 points: 1-0
• Scores 90 or more points: 0-0
• Allows less than 50 points: 9-3
• Allows 50-59 points: 13-8
• Allows 60-69 points: 2-14
• Allows 70-79 points: 1-4
• Allows 80-89 points: 0-2
• Allows 90 or more points: 0-1
• Plays a day game: 9-13
• Plays a night game: 16-19
• Plays Sunday: 1-4
• Plays Monday: 1-1
• Plays Tuesday: 1-1
• Plays Wednesday: 1-1
• Plays Thursday: 6-12
• Plays Friday: 2-2
• Plays Saturday: 13-11
• Plays in November: 5-3
• Plays in December: 7-5
• Plays in January: 6-11
• Plays in February: 5-9
• Plays in March: 2-4
• Wears its white/gray uniform: 11-12
• Wears its crimson uniform: 14-20

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