The Washington State Cougars are one step closer to a trip to Madison Square Garden for the NIT Final Four after Monday night's 74-64 beatdown of Oklahoma State in Pullman. The Cougars seized control from the tip-off, jumping out to an early 9-0 lead. Washington State trailed just once, falling behind by one midway through the first half before going on a run to enter the half up nine, 38-29.
Playing in front of an energized crowd at Beasley Coliseum, the Cougars put on a show, dominating Oklahoma State inside while using tough defense to keep the Cowboys at bay. It was Klay Thompson taking on the scoring load again, pouring in a game-high 21 points for the Cougars. Brock Motum came off the bench to add 17 points, providing valuable minutes in the post for Washington State. DeAngelo Casto had 11 points, but frustrated Oklahoma State forward Marshall Moses while holding him to just two points in 15 minutes of limited action due to foul trouble.
Washington State moves on to face Northwestern with a trip to Madison Square Garden on the line on Wednesday. The Cougars will have the hosting duties again as the higher-seeded team after Northwestern knocked out No. 1 seed Boston College over the weekend.
A full look at the bracket can be found below. For more on the NIT and the Cougars, swing over to SB Nation's Washington State blog, CougCenter.
Upper left bracket:
No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide def. No. 4 New Mexico Lobos, 74-67
No. 2 Miami Hurricanes def. No. 3 Missouri State Bears, 81-72
Bottom left bracket:
No. 1 Colorado Buffaloes def. No. 4 California Golden Bears, 89-72
No. 7 Kent St. Golden Flashes def. No. 6 Fairfield Stags, 72-68
Upper right bracket:
No. 4 Northwestern Wildcats def. No. 1 Boston College Eagles, 85-67
No. 2 Washington St. Cougars def. No. 3 Oklahoma St. Cowboys, 74-64
Lower right bracket:
No. 4 Wichita St. Shockers def. No. 1 Virginia Tech Hokies, 79-76
No. 6 Charleston Cougars def No. 2 Cleveland St. Vikings, 64-56
Check back with our 2011 NIT StoryStream for more on the tournament and Washington State's run to Madison Square Garden.