December 22, 1997
KENNEWICK, Wash. -- The Eastern Washington men's basketball program ended a 45-year drought as the Eagles upended Washington State in overtime 83-82 Monday night in front of 2,335 at the Tri-Cities Coliseum.
The Eagles (5-4 overall) snapped a 17-game losing streak to the Cougars (6-4). The last time an Eastern Washington men's squad defeated Washington State was Dec. 1, 1952, a 72-71 overtime decision in Pullman.
"It was an exciting game, and a great game for our team, our basketball program and our university," said EWU head coach Steve Aggers. "I was very proud of our kids tonight. They battled and competed and were very persistent tonight."
Sophomore Chris Crosby had a chance to win the game for WSU, but his spinning 10-foot jump shot at the buzzer bounced off the right side of the rim and out.
Crosby's layup gave the Cougars their final lead 82-81 with 1:23 left in overtime, but he failed to complete the three-point play as he missed the following free throw attempt. Reserve forward Chris White got an offensive rebound and tip-in that made the final score with 58 seconds left.
Washington State led by as many as 10 points in the second half of regulation, but the Eagles chipped away at the free throw line, making 19 of 29 attempts in the second half alone. A buzzer-beating jump shot in the lane by Michael Lewis tied the score at 74-74 at the close of the second half.
Four different Cougars fouled out of the game, including starters Carlos Daniel and Rodrigo de la Fuente during the overtime period. The Cougars were whistled for a season-high 31 fouls and committed 27 turnovers.
Crosby led all scorers with 23 points while Daniel added 21 for WSU. Karim Scott paced the Eagles with 21 points.