California at Washington State
Tipoff: 7:30 p.m. today, Beasley Coliseum, Pullman.
Records: Cal 8-15 overall, 3-13 Pac-12; WSU 12-10, 5-10.
Players: Cougars guard Isaac Bonton (18.4 points, 4.2 assists) is listed as a probable starter after missing Monday’s 65-63 loss to Washington with a foot injury. The Bears’ top threat is 6-foot-4 guard Matt Bradley (19.1 points, 33 made 3-pointers).
Game themes: The Cougars continue their final homestand of the regular season, facing Cal, then Stanford on Saturday. They defeated Cal 71-60 on the road Jan. 7, but the Bears might be tougher now with the return of Bradley, who missed the previous game between the teams with an ankle injury.
Idaho at Portland State
Tipoff: 7 p.m. today, Viking Pavilion, Portland.
Records: Idaho 0-17 overall, 0-14 Big Sky. Portland State 6-9, 3-5.
Players: The Vandals’ top scoring average belongs to senior post Scott Blakney (11.0 points, 60.5 percent from the field), but sophomore guard Gabe Quinnett of Moscow has led them in four of their past six games. The Vikings are paced by 6-5 guard James Scott (12.7 points) and 6-10 post Khalid Thomas (11.6 points).
Game themes: The Vandals continue their quest to break into the win column, facing the team just above them in the 11-team Big Sky standings in a home-and-home pair of games, with the rematch set for noon Saturday at Memorial Gym. The Vikings’ main rival has been the coronavirus pandemic, which has wiped out 10 of their games, all because of outbreaks in the opposing camp.
Portland State at Idaho
Tipoff: 6 p.m. today, Memorial Gym, Moscow.
Records: Portland State 8-7 overall, 6-6 Big Sky. Idaho 12-6, 11-3.
Players: The Vandals are getting a major boost this year from grad transfer Gabi Harrington (16.8 points, 7.0 rebounds, 82.9 percent from the free-throw line), who fits Jon Newlee’s system to a T, according to the coach. The Vikings’ top scorer is 6-0 guard Desirae Hansen (13.9 points, 6.9 rebounds).
Game themes: The Vandals want to exploit the confidence boost they achieved in erasing a 12-point deficit to defeat Idaho State 72-56 on Saturday at home, handing the Bengals their first Big Sky loss of the season. Portland State also is riding some momentum after twice beating Northern Arizona last week. These teams clash again Saturday in Portland.