March 21, 2012
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Abe Lodwick put up a double-double with 23 points and 12 rebounds, both career highs, as Washington State University men's basketball defeated Oregon State, 72-55, Wednesday in the semifinals of the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) presented by Zebra Pen at Gill Coliseum.
The Cougars got their third win of the season over the Beavers as the teams met four times. WSU (18-16) will move on to the best-of-three championship series against Pittsburgh (20-16). The first game will take place Monday, March 26 at 7 p.m. PT at Beasley Coliseum. The second and third games, if necessary, will be played at Pittsburgh, March 28 and March 30. All three will be televised on HDNet.
Lodwick was coming off his previous career high of 16 points against Wyoming Monday in the quarterfinals of the CBI. He finished with 23 points and 12 rebounds for his first career double-double in a career-high 35 minutes. He was 8-for-12 from the field and 5-for-8 from beyond the 3-point arc. Junior Reggie Moore added a season-high 22 points in 39 minutes for the Cougars.
"I was glad to see that," WSU Head Coach Ken Bone said of Lodwick's success. "He is a local guy from Oregon and just had his career high the other night, where he had 16, and tonight he goes for . He's just such a great kid, a senior, and a captain. It's fun to see Abe have great success."
Oregon State (21-15) was led by Eric Moreland with a double-double of his own, 14 points and 11 rebounds. The league's second leading scorer, Jared Cunningham, added 13 points. WSU shot a blistering .533 (8-for-15) from beyond the 3-point arc, compared to just .167 (2-for-12) from OSU.
The Pac-12's leading scorer, Brock Motum, scored WSU's first four points before leaving the game with a right ankle injury with 18:10 to go in the first half. He did not return to action.
"We've had some other games we played pretty inspired but this is right up there," Bone said. "I thought our guys played really rallied knowing that our first team all-league guy was down and out. Our guys were able to manufacture points in different ways and they did a great job. We showed a lot of character and a lot of heart."
With Motum's absence, WSU found a variety of ways to score early with its next 10 points coming from four different players, Marcus Capers, DaVonté Lacy, Moore and D.J. Shelton to take a 14-8 lead with 12:44 to go in the half. Including that stretch, Moore scored eight of WSU's nine points as the Cougars led 19-13 with 7:49 to go in the first half.
The Beavers scored four-straight points capped by a layup by Charlie Barton to pull within two, 19-17, with 6:55 left in the half. From that point Lodwick caught fire, scoring 16 of WSU's final 20 points of the first half as WSU held a 10-point, 39-29 lead at intermission.
Oregon State got on the board first in the second half with one of two free throws from Roberto Nelson. Lacy and Moore combined to score the first eight points of the half for Washington State as WSU took a 13-point, 47-34 lead with 17 minutes to go.
The Beavers slowly chipped away at the lead and pulled within nine points, 51-42, with 13:15 to go. WSU used a 9-0 run at that point to extend the lead to 18, 60-42, with 8:57 remaining in the game. Despite OSU's attempt to foul toward the end of the game, the Cougars held on to their lead and finished with a 72-55 victory.
Monday's game at Beasley will mark just the second meeting between Washington State and Pittsburgh. The Panthers won the lone meeting, 57-43, Nov. 29, 2008 in the Championship game of the Legends Classic. Monday's game will be televised on HDNet.