Franks' 30 points leads WSU past Cal Poly 84-70
PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) — Robert Franks scored 30 points, grabbed six rebounds and distributed five assists as Washington State beat Cal Poly 84-70 at Beasley Coliseum on Monday.
Ahmed Ali added 15 points for Washington State (2-1), making five 3-point baskets and was crucial to several Cougar runs.
The size of the Mustang big men looked like an advantage at first but the speed and athleticism for WSU nullified the possible advantage. From start to finish it was a track meet for the Cougars and WSU dished out 25 assists on 33 made baskets with great interior passing leading to easy buckets.
"Their bigness works against them if you've got faster athletes to get up and down the floor and that's where we got out and ran in transition and had an opportunity to get some easy buckets," said WSU coach Ernie Kent.
Donovan Fields scored 22 points and added 7 assists for Cal Poly (1-2). Fields made 9 of 16 shots — one third of Cal Poly's made field goals — but it was not enough to close the large gap.
WSU was all business in the early going with a 17-2 run over 5:33 after being down 3-0 to start the game. Cal Poly was down 20 points when CJ Elleby for WSU was called for a technical foul after elbowing a Mustang player in the face on a layup attempt.
The Mustangs went on a 7-0 run after the technical but the Cougs answered back with a barrage from behind the 3-point arc. The Cougars knocked down four 3-pointers including back-to-back 3s from Ali during the stretch.
WSU would build on this to close the first half on a 17-3 run in the last 3:40 giving the Cougars a 27-point halftime lead. WSU shot 53 percent from 3-point range in the first half.
After some of the starters for WSU sat down, Cal Poly went on an 8-0 run, cutting the lead to 16.
Franks and crew came back into the game for a 7-0 run stopping the Mustang attack and cruising to victory.
"They did make some runs at us and I have to switch that lineup again and go back with my starters. We did a nice job of answering their runs down the stretch to close out the game," said coach Kent.
Washington State: The Cougars get back on the right track after beating Cal Poly and get rid of the bad taste in their mouths after losing to Seattle University last Wednesday night.
Cal Poly: After losing to the Cougars, the Mustangs have a quick turnaround playing Texas State on Wednesday in the Portland Classic.
Washington State hosts Delaware State on Saturday.