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Cougs Close out 2020 with Win over Eastern Washington

Dec 22, 2020

Game Highlights | Coach Ethridge Postgame | Ula Motuga Postgame | Boxscore

PULLMAN, Wash. – The Washington State women's basketball team used a balanced offensive attack against Eastern Washington Tuesday, Dec. 22, to pick up a 73-52 win over the Eagles in Beasley Coliseum.

WSU had a season-high nine players score against EWU in the win, and had four players reach double figures. Junior Ula Motuga led the charge for the Cougs, as the Logan, Australia native scored a team-best 13 points. Freshman Charlisse Leger-Walker followed with a 12-point performance to extend her double-digit scoring streak to five games. Junior Cherilyn Molina and redshirt sophomore Michaela Jones has 11 points and 10 points, respectively, to help Washington State outscore Eastern Washington, 32-4, in points off the bench.

With the win, Washington State improves to 4-1 on the year, while the Cougs close out their current four-game homestand with a 3-1 mark. For the Eagles, they fall to 1-6 on the year after Tuesday's contest.

The balanced-scoring attack led to a season-best 48.1% field goal percentage for the Cougars on Tuesday. WSU also matched its season-high in 3-point field goals, connecting on eight shots from behind-the-arc for the second-consecutive game.

The Cougar defense shined once again on Tuesday, as WSU forced EWU into 25 turnovers which led to a 23-9 edge for Washington State in points off turnovers. The Cougs limited an opponent to 55-or-fewer points for the third time through five games this season.

WSU was a bit slow coming out of the blocks against the Eagles, as they held a 16-13 advantage at the end of the first quarter. Washington State broke the game open in the second quarter, as they scored the frame's first six points en route to an 18-5 run that gave WSU a 15-point lead at 33-18 with 0:22 left to play in quarter. Eastern Washington would hit a layup right before the buzzer to make it a 13-point WSU lead at the break.

Washington State maintained its double-digit lead throughout the third and fourth quarters. The Cougars took a game-high 24-point lead late in the fourth at 71-47, before settling for the 21-point victory over their regional rival.

Up Next
Washington State will enjoy a 10-day break over the Holidays before playing their next game. The Cougars next game is set for Jan. 1, 2021 at Utah. Tip-off time is still to be announced.

Coug Quotes
Head Coach Kamie Ethridge on the Win: "I thought it was a sporadic kind of performance. I think we were expecting that to be the case after playing our third game in four days. It took us a while to get going, and I don't know if we ever were truly tremendous on the offensive end. Credit to Eastern, they caused us some trouble in the post. There is always something you can find to get better at. I'm just really happy with our performance and the fact that we were able to play so many people off our bench today."

Coug Notes
    - With the win, Washington State improves to 27-11 all-time against Eastern Washington in a series that dates back to 1970.
    - Washington State had a season-high four-players reach double-digits in Tuesday's win.
    - Redshirt sophomore Michaela Jones registered a career-high 10 points, while making two 3-point field goals.
    - Sophomore Grace Sarver scored a career-high nine points against the Eagles.
    - Freshman Charlisse Leger-Walker's 13-point performance extends her double-digit scoring streak to five games to begin her career.
    - The 21-point win over Eastern Washington marks the largest margin of victory for WSU this season.
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