Nov. 13, 2010
PULLMAN, Wash. - Four Cougars scored in double figures, Saturday as the Washington State University men's basketball team defeated Southern University by a score of 86-47 in its season-opener at Friel Court.
WSU was led by junior-transfer Faisal Aden, who showed flashes of brilliance and versatility as he found success pulling up for jumpers and attacking the rim. The newcomer finished with 18 points, going 7-for-16 from the field. He also grabbed six rebounds and three steals.
Junior DeAngelo Casto went 8-of-11 from the charity stripe on his way finishing with 16 points in as many minutes. Classmate Klay Thompson got off to a hot start, contributing 13 points by halftime. The Preseason Wooden Award Candidate cooled off in the second half, but filled the stat sheet with 15 points, six rebounds and six assists.
"I was really impressed with Klay Thompson," said WSU head coach Ken Bone. "Here's a guy that last December was leading the nation in scoring, or second, and he could have shot a lot more than 10 times tonight. He shoots 10 times, has 15 points, six rebounds, six assists...that's impressive for a guy who's capable of putting up big numbers. That's what we talked about as a team, if we're going to be successful we need to be unselfish and win as a team."
Reggie Moore, who started all but one game in his freshman season, did not play after aggravating a wrist injury and is out indefinitely. The absence of the standout point guard allowed others to step up and play a larger role in the Cougar victory.
"Reggie is a talented kid," said Aden. "With him at the point we are that much better. Without him we just have to fill in and we have guys that can handle the ball, we have guys that can bring up the ball and direct traffic and do the little things."
Sophomore Brock Motum was perfect from the field, (6-for-6) tying his career high with 14 points in the first start of his collegiate career. Marcus Capers finished two points shy of a double-double as he pulled down a career-high 15 rebounds. Freshman Patrick Simon added depth off the bench finishing with nine points and eight rebounds in only 13 minutes of action.
"We all stepped up," said Thompson. "We had a really balanced scoring effort, that's always good. It takes a lot of weight off my shoulders and it takes a lot of weight off Reggie's shoulders to have more guys who can score and we're a lot more balanced now."
Southern was held to 30 percent from the field after scoring only 18 points in the first half. Quinton Doggett led the Jaguars with 16 points and 11 rebounds. He was joined by Julius Ingram, who finished with 10 points, as the only Jaguars to finish in double figures.
WSU will be back in action Tuesday at 7 p.m., when it takes on cross-border rival Idaho at Friel Court.