Recap: Second half surge powers Stanford MBB past Wazzu
On Thursday, Stanford men’s basketball defeated Washington State 62-57 in Pullman behind a 23-0 run in the second half. Stanford junior forward Spencer Jones (16 points & 5 rebounds), sophomore forward Brandon Angel (16 points & 3 rebounds), and senior forward Jaiden Delaire (14 points & 3 rebounds) led the way for the Cardinal while freshman forward Mouhamed Gueye (16 points & 11 rebounds) was the top performer for the Cougars. Stanford improves to 10-4 overall and 3-1 in the Pac-12 while Washington State falls to 9-7 overall and 2-3 in the Pac-12.
“We were certainly thankful to get out of here with a W,” Stanford head coach Jerod Haase said after the game. “We played a Washington State team that did have a couple issues with personnel today, but they’re still a heck of a team and we understood how important it was to guard the 3-point line, to rebound the basketball and then in the second half we did a great job of that.”
The game was delayed by 75 minutes due to awaiting a COVID test from the Washington State side. Instead of tipping off at 2:00 PM, the game tipped off at 3:15 PM. There was a bit of uncertainty over whether or not the game would be played, but in the end it was. Hence the recap.
Once the game was under way, Washington State got off to a 7-0 lead with 16:03 to go in the first half. Washington State was shooting 3-4 from the field while Stanford was shooting 0-2. Stanford had 4 turnovers. They needed to settle in and not allow the Cougars to get too large of a lead.
Washington State would continue to lead, up 14-8 with 10:09 to go in the half. TJ Bamba and Mouhamed Gueye each had 4 points for the Cougars. Stanford was shooting 4-10 from the field with 6 turnovers. They needed to pick things up.
With 7:37 to go in the half, Washington State led 16-10. James Keefe was leading Stanford with 4 points. Others really needed to find a rhythm. Gueye was leading the way for Wazzu with 6 points on 3-4 shooting from the field.
Things continued to go Washington State’s way as the Cougars led 23-18 with 3:35 to go in the half. Gueye was up to 8 points for Wazzu. Harrison Ingram was finally on the board for Stanford with a hoop inside plus the harm. Stanford wasn’t looking great, yet they were hanging around.
At halftime, Washington State led 35-26. Spencer Jones was up to 6 points for Stanford after making a tough triple right before the half ended. It was a huge shot that allowed Stanford to get a little bit of momentum as they went into the locker room. Brandon Angel’s 7 points was leading Stanford. As for Wazzu, Mouhamed Gueye (12 points) and Michael Flowers (9 points) were leading the way for them.
Stanford built on the momentum from Jones’ shot to start the second half. With 15:41 to go, it was now a 42-38 lead for Wazzu. Stanford was coming back. Jaiden Delaire hit a huge 3-pointer and was up to 11 points while Keefe had a nice transition bucket plus the foul.
The game would soon be tied 42-42 with 11:54 to go. Keefe was up to 8 points after Ingram found him for an easy jam. Stanford was on a 9-0 run over the last 5:06. Wazzu was shooting 3-9 from the field in the second half. They had gone cold.
Stanford’s 9-0 run soon became a 16-0 run as they led 47-42 with 10:05 to go after a triple from Angel. They were rolling now. Rather than stopping the bleeding, Wazzu continued to build a house of bricks as they could get nothing to fall. With 7:44 to go, it was now a 52-42 lead for Stanford. A 21-0 Cardinal run. Simply incredible. Angel (14 points), Jones (13 points), and Delaire (11 points) were all in double figures.
With 3:26 to go, Stanford led 57-43. After trailing by nine points at halftime, Stanford was on the verge of running away with the game. The 21-0 run became a 23-0 run before Washington State finally scored. Just wild. Washington State went as cold as you’ll ever see a team go and to Stanford’s credit, they made them pay by making their shots on their end.
“The run in the second half was as good as I’ve ever seen in terms of 23-0 run and certainly changed the dynamics of the game,” Haase said. “I thought our guys competed in that second half and again we’re excited and thankful to get out of here with a win.”
Stanford continued to lead as expected. With 1:30 to go, they were up 59-49 after Delaire made two foul shots. Stanford also would keep possession as Ingram drew a foul after the shot went up. At this point, it was clear that Stanford was going to win barring an epic meltdown.
Stanford would lead 61-53 with 30.1 to go after Ingram went 2-2 at the foul line. Washington State was doing a nice job of playing the foul game and stretching out the game as long as possible. However, time simply wasn’t on their side at this point.
While things did get a little shakier at the end with Stanford almost turning the ball over a couple of times, the end result went as expected. Stanford walked out with a 62-57 victory. The last 90 seconds were a bit of an adventure, but a win is a win and if you’re Stanford, you’ll take it. Washington State is one of the better teams in the Pac-12 and not an easy team to beat on the road. For Stanford to win in that road environment and to do so with the delay and 23-0 run makes it all the more impressive.
At this point, Stanford does seem to have found a groove. They’ve now won four games in a row, all against quality competition and seem a lot more certain of their identity and who they are as a team. They’re playing good team basketball, trusting one another, and when they get down, they don’t seem to get too rattled. They just stick to the game plan and trust that it’ll bear the type of fruit they want in the end.
Up next for Stanford will be a road game at Washington on Saturday. That game will tip-off at 3:00 PM PT on Pac-12 Networks and Cardinal Sports Network radio.
Note: Stanford freshman Maxime Raynaud was once again unavailable as he’s still going through COVID protocols.
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