March 10, 2005
By BETH HARRIS
AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Rob Little scored just his second basket of the game with 17 seconds left, helping Stanford rally for a 60-58 victory over Washington State in the first round of the Pac-10 tournament Thursday night.
The loss prevented the Cougars (12-16) from completing a three-game sweep of the Cardinal this season. Washington State won both regular-season meetings for the first time since 1992-93.
Chris Hernandez led Stanford with 18 points. Matt Haryasz added 15 points and 12 rebounds and Nick Robinson had 13 points.
Thomas Kelati scored 20 points, including six 3-pointers, for the sixth-seeded Cougars.
The third-seeded Cardinal (18-11) will meet No. 14 Washington in Friday's semifinals. The second-seeded Huskies held off No. 7 seed Arizona State 95-90 in overtime.
The Cardinal outscored Washington State 17-7 to start the second half and make its way back into the game. The Cougars led all the way in the first half.
Tied at 38-all, the Cougars committed a shot-clock violation and Hernandez hit a 3-pointer to give Stanford its first lead of the game with 12:26 remaining. His 3-pointer was part of a 10-point run that kept Stanford in front 46-38.
The Cougars shot 80 percent from 3-point range in the first half, with Kelati connecting on three in a row to start the game. But Stanford's defense clamped down on the senior guard for much of the second half.
The Cardinal couldn't silence Kelati completely, though. He made a 3-pointer - his first basket of the second half - to get the Cougars within 52-51 with 5:04 remaining. After Hernandez made two free throws, Kelati sank another 3-pointer - his sixth - from near the Cougars' bench to tie the game at 54.
Robinson scored for Stanford before Kelati's 3-point try popped in and out. Teammate Chris Schlatter picked him up, though, hitting a 3-pointer with a hand in his face to give Washington State a 57-56 lead with 1:12 remaining.
Robinson scored on a goaltending call against Jeff Varem to put Stanford back in front 58-57 with 52 seconds left. Varem made one of two free throws for a 58-all tie with 41 seconds left.
After a timeout, Little powered his way inside for the go-ahead basket. Schlatter's long jumper bounced off the rim as time expired.
The teams met in the first round for the second straight year; the Cardinal won 68-47 a year ago.
Injuries have hurt the Cardinal, with leading scorer Dan Grunfeld out for the season because of a torn knee ligament. The team is down to eight scholarship players and one walk-on, but the Cardinal has won 12 of its last 16 games.