Vandals fall short in thriller to CSUN – The Argonaut

Following an 84-59 opening night loss in the Battle of Palouse, the Vandals sought redemption in their home debut. Unfortunately, the Vandals fell short once again as California State University Northridge defeated them 76-73, leaving the Vandals with a 0-2 record. New head coach Alex Pribble’s debut had been highly anticipated by Moscow and the University of Idaho, but their strong start wasn’t enough to secure a victory.

After a CSUN miss, junior Quinn Denker sprinted the full length of the court and delivered a perfect lob pass to junior forward Julius Mims, who sealed the play with a powerful dunk, igniting the crowd.

The game saw the Vandals seize a 17-8 lead with a remarkable 10-0 run, but CSUN swiftly mounted a 12-0 comeback, taking an 18-17 lead. The first half saw both teams shooting over 40%, with the Vandals going 13/31 from the field and CSUN making 16/36 attempts.

As the game continued, sophomore forward Tyler Mrus scored back-to-back threes, spearheading the Vandals to a 42-38 lead.

Senior Guard D’Angelo Minnis looks to pass the ball back into play | John Keegan | Argonaut

However, the game took a drastic turn as Mrus sustained a severe injury while attempting to prevent a CSUN basket, leaving the crowd in stunned silence.

The Vandals rallied together after Mrus’ injury, intensifying their defense and holding a seven-point lead with just under eight minutes remaining. In a thrilling climax, CSUN snatched a 72-68 lead with 2:08 left, setting the stage for a high-stakes finish that saw the Vandals narrow the gap.

Eventually, CSUN secured a 76-73 victory, leaving the Vandals winless. Despite the loss, redshirt junior Terren Frank stood out with an impressive 18-point performance.

Redshirt Junior Forward Terren Frank looks for a pass | John Keegan | Argonaut

In the midst of defeat, Coach Pribble remains optimistic, expressing confidence in the team’s potential to overcome challenges and achieve success in the future.

Players have off nights, and Denker had one tonight, only scoring four points, and he turned the ball over six times, Pribble, however, is not worried about Denker.   “Quinn is going to respond; there’s nobody that feels worse about that last shot not going in than Quinn. He prepares, works harder than anybody I know, and he has an incredible work ethic; he’s one of the best leaders I have ever been around.” He said.

The Vandals will be back at home on Tuesday, Nov 14. To take on Evergreen State, hoping to finally get that zero out of the win column and get Pribble his first win as a Vandal.

Jayden Barfuss can be reached at [email protected]


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