Kenny Ocker is a RTC correspondent. He filed this report after the Washington State-Idaho game Saturday night in Moscow, Idaho.
For better or for worse, the Washington State Cougars are DaVonte Lacy’s team. The junior shooting guard from Tacoma, Washington, is one of the most efficient high-usage players in the country, and the cast surrounding him in Pullman is unspectacular offensively. In fact, Lacy, who plays 85 percent of the available minutes, is the only WSU player seeing more than 20 MPG who has an above-average offensive rating.
Against its next door neighbor, Idaho, on Saturday night, Lacy was again carrying his teammates with 23 points already scored with 33 seconds left and the Cougars with the ball trailing 66-65. Lacy ended up with the ball in his hands on a broken play with 15 seconds left and decided to drive to the basket. He put up a contested floater and it bounced off the back iron and rolled out. But teammate D.J. Shelton – who finished with 10 points and 14 rebounds – grabbed the offensive rebound and was fouled, hitting both free throws and giving the Cougars a one-point lead. When Idaho’s Connor Hill, a 44 percent three-point shooter, ended up with the ball in the left corner for a last second shot, it was Lacy who leaped out to contest it, arm stretched high into the air. The ball rimmed out and the Cougars escaped the raucous Cowan Spectrum with a 67-66 win.