ASU Basketball: Sun Devils look to rebound against Washington State

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

The Sun Devils go for their first conference win of the season this afternoon against Washington State.

After suffering a 76-65 defeat at the hands of Lorenzo Romar and the Washington Huskies on Thursday night, the Arizona State Sun Devils are back in action this afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena.

Jahii Carson and company will look to even up their conference record against the Washington State Cougars, who are coming off a loss in Tucson against Arizona. The Sun Devils are 3-1 against the Cougars over the past two seasons, including a sweep over Washington State last year.

Time: 6 p.m. EST/4 p.m. MST

Television/Radio: ESPNU/Arizona Sports 620

Last Meeting: February 20th, 2013 (ASU wins 69-57)

Arizona State Update

The Sun Devils fell to Washington in their conference opener at Wells Fargo Arena on Thursday. Washington dominated most of the contest, leading by as many as 24 points in the second half. The Sun Devils only mustered eight assists, their fewest in 120 home games dating back to 2007.

Arizona State had three players in double figures, including Jordan Bachynski and Shaq McKissic, who both scored 13 points. Jermaine Marshall scored just four points on 2-11 shooting.

The Sun Devils have had a tendency to live and die by the three-point shot. Against Washington, they died from it, shooting just 2-14 from beyond the arc. Marshall, McKissic and Jonathan Gilling combined to shoot 1-11 from 3-point land.

Arizona State has not started 0-2 in conference since the 2009-2010 season.

Washington State Update

The Cougars set a Pac-12 record in their conference-opener against Arizona. The problem is they set a Pac-12 record for fewest points in a game with 25. Washington State shot 9-45 from the field, and 5-13 from the free throw line against Arizona. The leading scorer for Washington State against Arizona was sophomore forward Junior Longrus, who scored six points.

On the season, Washington State sits at 7-6, with losses coming to: Gonzaga, TCU, Butler, St. Joseph's, UTEP and Arizona. The Cougars are led in scoring by guard DeVonte Lacy, who averages 18.9 PPG.

The last time Washington State did not start conference play 0-2 was the 2007-2008 season.

Prediction

This Arizona State team has been hard to figure out. When the Sun Devils can hit their threes, they are difficult to beat. However, as we saw against Washington, when they can't drain a three the offense can become stagnant and points can be hard to come by.

The key will be stopping Lacy and dominating the glass. Washington State ranks 196th in the nation in rebounding and 251st in field goal percentage. On paper, Arizona State is the more talented team and it has a distinct advantage with Bachynski inside.

Arizona State should roll pretty easily in this one, as the Cougars look to be one the Pac-12's bottom feeders. Arizona State 80, Washington State 65

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