Sports

Disappointing night for Stanford men in basketball loss

 

Stanford's 67-61 nonconference men's basketball loss to visiting Eastern Washington on Tuesday was disappointing in so many ways.

Coming off a solid victory over Pacific on Sunday, the Cardinal (2-1) lacked the same energy against the Eagles (2-1) and paid the price.


Oscar Da Silva
It didn't help that Dorian Pickens missed his first game after appearing in the past 63. There's no timetable for his return from what ha been described as a left foot injury.

"Dorian is an important part of the team," Stanford's Michael Humphrey said. "We have to be able to play well without him. That's on us as older guys."

Junior guard Marcus Sheffield also missed the game with a left foot injury and freshman Kodye Pugh was out with a right ankle injury. That's in addition to Kezie Okpala's continued absence.

It all led to three freshmen in the starting lineup in a game for the first time since 1983.

Stanford had plenty of talent to deal with Eastern Washington; it just didn't get it going in time.

"We didn't come out the way we needed to be," Cardinal Reid Travis said. "We should always start the game ready. We can't mess around with them. We have the talent and the maturity to play better. We can't give away games like that."

A quick 9-2 lead might have been the worst things that could happen to Stanford. The Eagles lowly cut into the deficit and bounced into the lead on the strength of their 3-point shooting.

Eastern Washington missed its first three 3-point attempts and then went 7-of-11 the last 12 minutes of the first half to take a 33-27 edge into halftime.

Stanford briefly drew within two points early in the second half but never closed the gap completely.

"There's tremendous room for improvement," Cardinal coach Jarod Haase said. "We have a long way to go and we're not closing the gap quickly enough."

Humphrey has reached double figures in rebounding in all three games but his scoring has been erratic. He was 6-of-12 and scored 26 points against the Tigers. In the other two games he's a combined 3-of-15 with eight points.

"We weren't as engaged in the game a we needed to be," Haase said. "We need to get better quickly."

Stanford has one more chance to hone its game, hosting Northeastern at 3 p.m. Friday, before taking on the likes of North Carolina, Florida and either Gonzaga or Ohio State in successive games next week.

Travis turned in another 20-point effort, his third to start the season. Carlos Da Silva, the 6-foot-9 freshman from Germany, grabbed 17 rebounds to go with 12 points before fouling out of the game.

"He's going to be a heck of a player here for a long time," Haase said. "People are going to enjoy watching him play."

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