by WSU Athletics
WOLLONGONG, New South Wales – Brock Motum scored 25 points and Reggie Moore added 21, but it wasn't enough as Washington State University men's basketball fell to Wollongong NRE Hawks of the National Basketball League (NBL), 86-74, Friday at The Snakepit. The game was WSU's third of a its five-game Australian tour.
Motum added 9 rebounds to his 25 points on 10-for-13 shooting, while Moore dished out 3 assists. No other Cougar scored in double-figures, as Junior Longrus and Dexter Kernich-Drew each added 9 points. Longrus was 4-for-6 from the field, finishing and added 5 rebounds before fouling out in 25 and a half minutes of action.
Wollongong's Oscar Forman scored a game-high 30 points on 10-for-16 shooting from the field. Larry Davidson added a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds, while Rhys Martin added 15 points.
Washington State got off to a hot start, taking a quick 8-2 lead in the game, six of the points coming from Motum. At that point, Wollongong used a 10-0 run of its own to take a 12-8 lead with 5:15 to go in the first quarter The Cougars took the lead once again at 15-14 with 3:03 off a 3-point play by Motum, but the Hawks went on a 10-2 run to end the quarter with a 24-17 advantage. Motum scored 11 points in the first quarter, joined in scoring by Moore, Longrus and Shelton each with 2 points.
Wollongong continued to build on its lead, extending it to as many as 17 at 36-19 in the second quarter. Facing it largest deficit of the half, WSU went on a 9-2 run with 5 points coming from Royce Woolridge to pull within 10 points, 38-28, with 2:45 to go in the second quarter. Motum and Moore scored WSU's final 7 points as the Cougars trailed 35-44 at halftime. Motum finished with 18 in the first half, followed by Moore with 8 and Woolridge with 5.
After a 3-pointer by Longrus to open the third quarter and cut the lead to 6, Wollongong scored the next 6 points to double its lead at 12. The Cougars then used a 12-5 run to cut the lead to 5, 55-50 with 3:01 to go in the third quarter. The Hawks used two-straight 3-pointers and a 3-point play to quickly extend the lead to 14, 66-52 at the end of three. Moore scored 9 of his 17 points in the quarter, as Motum didn't score. Longrus added 5 points in the third.
The Hawks started the fourth quarter strong with a 4-point play to put the lead at 70-52 with 9:14 to go in the game. The Cougars used a 7-0 run to pull within 5 points once again, 74-59 with 5:56 left in the game. The Hawks extended the lead to 16 points with 2:10 and held off a Cougar comeback for the 86-74 victory.
Washington State will head north as it takes on the Brisbane Spartans, Monday, Aug. 13.