Beavers ring in the new year with Civil War victory

2016 Basketball Civil War

The Oregon State men’s basketball team secured its first Civil War victory of the Wayne Tinkle era Sunday evening, defeating Oregon in a 70-57 rout to begin Pac-12 play. OSU was boosted by a tremendous team effort on both sides of the ball, taking an early lead in the first half and never looking back.

“We put together our best 40 minute effort to this point,” Tinkle said. “Oregon’s really tough, they’ve got a lot of weapons and Dana [Altman’s] one of the top coaches around, and I’m just proud of our guys for finding a way.”

With a minute left, the Beavers held a 15 point lead and Gill Coliseum was on their feet in pure ecstasy. The crowd showered senior guard Gary Payton II with praise for his big game, chanting “GPII” with a minute left as he hit the bench.

Payton II, who shot zero for five in the first half, bounced back in the second half with 4-6 shooting to keep the Beavers afloat. He finished with 12 points, six rebounds, six assists, two steals and a handful of highlight plays.

Freshman forward Tres Tinkle, who paced the Beavers with a team-high 19 points and six rebounds, thought the atmosphere created by the sellout crowd of 9,604 fans helped elevate his game.

“It was a lot of fun, we have the best student section and fan base in the entire Pac-12,” Tres Tinkle said. “They kind of helped as a sixth man, helped us get that extra boost.”

The Beavers (10-2) were able to take a 34-19 first half lead despite shooting 35 percent from the field. While they were cold on offense, they found success by limiting Oregon to 35 percent shooting for the entire game, and also by out-rebounding them on the offensive end 10 to one in the first half.

“[Rebounding] was a focus, [Schaftenaar] set the tone and [Eubanks] climbed all over the glass,” Wayne Tinkle said.

The dominance on the boards was partially attributable to OSU’s visible size advantage in the front court. Oregon was unable to size up with the Beavers, as their best counter to the duo of Drew Eubanks and Olaf Schaftenaar was senior forward Chris Boucher, who at 6’10 and 190 pounds was unable to size up. Boucher finished with a team-high 14 points and seven rebounds on five of nine shooting.

Oregon was also bogged down by uncharacteristic sloppiness, committing 12 turnovers and only 11 assists. UO entered the game with the lowest turnover margin in the Pac-12.

Junior forward Langston Morris-Walker was a key contributor in getting the Beavers into their offensive groove. Early in the first half he nailed an open three-pointer, and moments later, he stole a pass in the post and took it cross-court for a contested lay-up, exhilarating the crowd. Morris-Walker would finish the game with 12 points and two three-pointers on 4-7 shooting.

Olaf Schaftenaar also had a nice showing for the Beavers, matching his career-high of seven rebounds in the first half and breaking it in the second half, finishing with 13 points and eight rebounds.

The Beavers came out sleepy in the second half. UO took advantage and slowly crept back into the game, cutting the lead to seven with 13:11 remaining. Gary Payton II promptly woke the Beavers up in electrifying fashion, soaring over Boucher for a gravity-defying poster slam-dunk. Eubanks joined in on the fun next possession, nabbing a Tres Tinkle pass for a thundering alley-oop, forcing Oregon head coach Dana Altman to call timeout.

“In the second half when they took it to us, and we didn’t fold,” Wayne Tinkle said. “We counter punched them and then hung in there and were able to put it away.”

The Beavers were able to hold on from there out with lights out 60 percent second half shooting and by playing within their own boundaries.

“Guys stayed in their roles, we did what was working, and everybody contributed,” Morris-Walker said. “[Payton II] was slow in the beginning, but he was just trying to give it to people who were hitting.”

OSU improved its all-time in the Civil War to 185-160, and will continue Pac-12 play this week in as they take on Stanford in Palo Alto on Wednesday, Jan. 6.

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