Cougars hope to have Lacy for rivalry game

WASHINGTON STATE COACH Ken Bone hopes to make a major addition to the team's lineup when the Cougars play at 3 p.m. Saturday (TV: Pac-12 Networks) against Washington. Bone said during his Tuesday teleconference that he is not ruling out junior guard DaVonté Lacy, who has been sidelined nearly a month, as WSU attempts to snap a four-game losing streak Saturday.

The Cougars (8-12 overall, 1-7 conference) did not practice Monday and will not workout today, either. But Bone said Lacy will be able to participate in some passing and shooting drills when WSU returns to the court Wednesday. When asked if that means Lacy, who has not played since Jan. 5 at Arizona State because of a rib injury, will play against the Huskies, Bone said "I think he'll have a chance."

He said that he does not want to overstate Lacy's absence by saying that the team would have won five or six conference games if he were not injured, but Bone said the team has been worse in just about every facet without him.

"It's been difficult," Lacy said. "I didn't think it would be this difficult. I think we would be better in a lot of areas [with Lacy]."

Lacy averaged a team-high 17.7 points per game before the injury. With him playing in just one conference game, the Cougars have averaged 49.1 points in Pac-12 play. Bone said the Cougars need to contain UW guard C.J. Wilcox, who averages 19.6 points per game, and simply score more frequently if they hope to upset the Huskies (13-8, 5-3).

One player who has not scored is junior guard Royce Woolridge, who averages 8.6 points per game. Bone said he believes Woolridge is more comfortable handling the point than last season — he played that position to start 2012-13 and when Mike Ladd was injured toward the end of the year — but did not have much experience in the role before then. He said Woolridge has looked to be a distributor first, but his statistics do not reflect that with assists because his teammates have missed shots. Bone said he and assistant coach Curtis Allen told Woolridge that he played well during Sunday's 71-44 loss against Oregon in spite of wearing a boot on his foot.

"His foot has given him some trouble," said Bone, adding that he does not expect Woolridge to miss any playing time. "It was bothering him prior to the game, so we put it in a boot."

Bone said Woolridge is a "good teammate," who has handled the shooting woes of his teammates well. But how is the rest of the team reacting to their struggles in conference play? Bone said he thinks they are "ticked off," but should have a better idea when they return to practice.

"We will find out tomorrow," he said. "It's a good group of guys."

CF.C asked about the adjusted practice schedule for this week with the Cougars only playing one game. Bone said he will meet individually with a few players today, but after playing Sunday games two of the last three weeks, he felt his team needed a break.

"We just need a day off," he said. Recommended Stories