Double overtime needed as Beavers secure victory on night of annual ‘Teddy Bear Toss’

Talia Von Oelhoffen celebrates with Adlee Blacklock after clinching victory against the University of Arizona Wildcats at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis on Jan. 12.
Talia Von Oelhoffen celebrates with Adlee Blacklock after clinching victory against the University of Arizona Wildcats at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis on Jan. 12.
Jason May

No shot was bigger than the one Talia von Oelhoffen made with three seconds remaining in regulation that would eventually propel the Beavers to a 73-70 victory over Arizona Friday night in Gill Coliseum.

“That was one of the most special moments in Gill in a long time,” Head coach Scott Rueck said.

After two missed threes, von Oelhoffen secured another offensive rebound and put up a third three-point attempt down three, to tie the game at 60. 

Kailyn Gilbert put up a good look as the buzzer sounded, but it rimmed out and overtime was needed to decide the game.

The first overtime saw Raegan Beers hit four free throws for the home Beavers, and Gilbert made two jumpers for the away team. Jada Williams had an open look from three for the win but missed it, and five more minutes were added to the clock.

Von Oelhoffen saw herself in the clutch again, as she was fouled with 13 seconds remaining, and hit two huge free throws to extend the lead to three. Williams put up a three to tie the game with a few seconds remaining, yet it rimmed out, landing in Raegan Beers’s hands. 

Beers dominated, as she finished the game with 20 points and 20 rebounds, a career-high, tying a school record for rebounds in a game. 

“It feels good to be with the top players at Oregon State rebounding-wise, that is a really big honor. I’m honored to be up there with those big names,” Beers said.

Leading the way for the Wildcats, Gilbert finished with 22 points, six rebounds, and five steals.

While she didn’t ever see the ball go in the basket, Helena Pueyo saw the floor the most, playing an astounding 48 minutes, eight minutes longer than a regulation game.

Fans waited for the signal, as hundreds of teddy bears crept around the stadium. When the time came, the hardwood was instantly filled with stuffed animals of all kinds.

While this was the highlight of halftime, the fans now had open hands to cheer on a comeback, as the team trailed by four at the break. Throughout the game, fans didn’t hold back, as Gill Coliseum erupted in cheers whenever a Beaver made a great play, and was showered with boos when they disagreed with calls. 

The Beavers were in a back-and-forth battle in a turnover-plagued first quarter, accumulating seven over the first ten minutes of the game to the Wildcats one. The Beavers finished the game with a season-high 25 turnovers. Head Coach Scott Rueck spoke on the turnovers after the game.

“They plagued us again,” Rueck said. “You got to give Arizona credit, they were all over the place.”

“For us, it’s just a lot of youth out there, against a lot of pressure. I think it is something that we will get better and better at as we get more and more experience,” Rueck said.

Even with all the turnovers, the Beavers didn’t let the Wildcats use it against them, with the score still knotted up headed into the second quarter 14-14. 

With the second quarter seeing the action stay the same, both teams traded runs to keep the game close or tied the entire quarter. 

Gilbert untied the game with a dime to Breya Cunningham for her to reach double digits just before the half ended. As the buzzer sounded, Gilbert extended the Wildcats lead with a fadeaway to secure a four-point lead at the half, 29-25, and finished off the half on a 13-3 run.

The Wildcats dominated the paint, scoring 20 of their 29 points in the restricted area in the half.

After a grueling nine and a half minutes, Adlee Blacklock hit an and-one through tons of contact to regain the lead for the Beavers 41-38, and the fans erupted in cheers. 

“There is nothing like playing in Gill,” Rueck said. “They were booing calls three minutes into this game, it is just so nice to know that we’ve got a fan base that not only braves the weather for us, I didn’t know what it was going to be like tonight.”

“They were good to us, and we paid them back with that crazy last minute of regulation to force overtime. It was just so fun to feel that energy and to see all those arms go up and everybody going crazy out there.”

The Beavers, (13-2, 2-2) end their two-game losing streak, and hope to continue their winning ways against the Arizona State Sun Devils on Jan. 14 at noon in Gill Coliseum.

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