By Rick Eymer
Palo Alto Online Sports
The weekend failed to play out the way the Stanford men's basketball team wanted to script it. Instead of a potential sweep and a share of first place in the Pac-10, the Cardinal will make to make do with a split and a lower rung in the standings.
Stanford wasted a perfectly good nine-point halftime advantage in falling to visiting Washington State, 61-58, Saturday evening. The Cougars outdefended Stanford in the second half and that made a big difference.
The Cardinal could not find a way to deter Klay Thompson and Faisal Aden from shooting, and making, baskets. The two Washington State players combined for 17 field goals and 41 total points. Stanford was 21-of-61 from the floor overall.
"Overall we defended well but we have to back that up with the offense," Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said. "Klay Thompson is a relentless scorer. You're not going to stop him. He's a big-time player."
The Cougars played without sophomore Reggie Moore, who was indefinitely suspended from the team before Saturday's game due to a marijuana possession charge against him from last December 12. He played in the first three Pac-10 games.
Aden started in Moore's place and scored 20 points, his best effort in a conference game. He helped the Cougars win at Stanford for the first time since 2005.
Stanford (3-2, 10-6) had its eight-game home winning streak come to an end and will have to regroup on the road this week. The Cardinal travels to USC Thursday and UCLA Saturday.
"You don't like to learn off losses but we'll learn from this experience," Dawkins said. "They outplayed us. I thought we settled for too many outside shots, especially in the second half. We needed to be more patient."
Washington State scored 10 of the first 11 points of the second half to tie it. The Cougars took their first lead with 10:17 remaining to play. The game was tied four times and the lead changed hands three times in the second half.
"Going into halftime we talked about how the first five minutes of the second half was going to be key," Stanford freshman Anthony Brown said. "They came out and hit in the mouth and we were never able to respond."
Andrew Zimmerman gave the Cardinal a 51-45 edge with 7:35 left but a 12-1 Cougars' run ended any hopes of running away with the contest. Thompson's lay-up with 3:53 remaining put Washington State ahead to stay.
Brown, who can play guard or forward, scored 12 points on a season-high four 3-pointers, reaching double figures for the fifth time this season. He's played 24 minutes in back-to-back games and will likely continue to see his time on the court increase as the guard situation remains malleable.
Jeremy Green led the Cardinal with 13 points and had a 3-point try fall short at the buzzer. Josh Owens recorded his fourth double-double with 12 points, 10 in the first half on 5-of-5 shooting, and 10 rebounds. Dwight Powell added nine points and 10 rebounds.
Green needs four points to reach the 1,000 mark for his career, and needs five more 3-pointers to match Chris Hernandez (188) for fifth all-time in career 3-pointers. Stanford lost for the first time this season when leading at halftime