Oct. 17, 2009
PULLMAN, Wash. - Both the Washington State University men's and women's basketball squads officially opened the 2009-10 season with the teams' first practices of the season and Midnight Mayhem, held in Bohler Gym.
Official practiced opened at 5 p.m. for both squads as the women took the court in Beasley Coliseum and the men went to work in the practice gym in PEB. Following the WSU volleyball team's 3-0 sweep of No. 16 USC, both teams took the court for Midnight Mayhem in front of a packed gym.
"I thought it was great, I wasn't expecting this many people," Rosie Tarnowski of the women's team said. "The support was great and I think we're showing what it's going to be like this season in Beasley. We were really excited we got to be a part of it, it was a lot of fun to be here."
After men's head coach Ken Bone and women's head coach June Daugherty introduced their respective teams, the teams participated in a joint 3-point competition. Six men and six women on split teams of six, the crimson team and the gray team, competed in the contest. Michael Harthun got things started off smooth for the crimson team, as he made all six of the shots, including the money ball for seven points. He was pitted against WSU's freshman record holder for 3-pointers in a season, Klay Thompson.
The crimson team, also consisting of Reggie Moore and John Allen from the men's team and Jazmine Perkins, Tarnowski and Danielle LeNoir from the women's team, went on for the 26-18 victory over the gray team which included Abe Lodwick and Nikola Koprivica from the men's squad and April Cook, Ireti Amojo and Katie Grad representing the women.
"The turnout was good, the ZZU Cru is always great with supporting our program and the fans are always great, so I thought it was really good, really positive," Harthun said. "I thought it's a good way to introduce our team to the fans and our new coach to the program because it gets everyone excited about the team and this season."
In the dunk competition, four members of the men's team competed, including Moore, Marcus Capers, Brock Motum and James Watson. Capers and Motum advanced to the championship round as Capers used his between the legs dunk and Motum displayed his ability to take off his shirt and dunk the ball.
Motum went first in the championship round. After impressing the crowd, Capers came out in full swing, throwing his entire arm up to his elbow in the hoop to win over the fans and the judges and take home the championship. The event ended with a scrimmage by the men's team and an autograph session.
"The crowd had me pumped for it," Capers said. "Half those dunks I made were dunks I missed in dunk contests in high school. In the arm and off the glass windmill, I never finished them in front of a crowd, ever. I told everyone I was going to do it, nobody thought I was going to do it. So I just had to prove my teammates wrong."
With the return of the season, the men's and women's basketball blogs are also back in full swing at www.wsucougars.com. Be sure to follow the women's team on the Hardwood Diary. You can check it out by clicking HERE, You can also read all about the men's squad at the Crimson ZZU, which can be found HERE,