Beavers win three in a row over Ducks

OSU junior guard Sean Miller-Moore (#1) goes up for a shot against Oregon defender in freshman forward C.J. Walker (#14). 

Zachary Harris, Sports Contributor

The Oregon State Men’s Basketball team has won their last three games against Oregon. 

After a close loss by the hands of the California Golden Bears on Feb. 1 in Berkeley, Calif,, the Beavers looked to bounce back against the No. 14 Ducks on Feb. 8 at Gill Coliseum. Oregon State secured a major upset at home by beating Oregon with a score of 63-53. 

The win is the Beavers’ second top 25 upset for the season. The Beavers also defeated the No. 24 Arizona Wildcats at home on Jan. 12 in Gill Coliseum. They also secured a road upset at the Stanford Cardinal on Jan. 30. OSU now has a season record of 14-9 with a conference record of 4-7. 

From the opening tip in front of a full Gill Coliseum, the crowd was loud and on their feet in the first of two Civil War matchups on the season. 

“There was a lot of energy going into this game,” OSU junior forward Ethan Thompson said “[The] crowd was there showing a lot of support… it was energy and it went our way.” 

Thompson finished the game with a team high 15 points on 5-12 shooting.

Through the first ten minutes of play, Oregon State led the Ducks 16-15. The game was close throughout, with nine ties and 12 lead changes. Oregon finished the first half on a 7-0 scoring run, giving the Ducks the lead by a score of 28-32.

Oregon came out of halftime ahead of the Beavers, pushing their lead to ten points. Oregon State had to slowly chip away at the double digit deficit. 

“We just didn’t panic, stayed tough, played defense, locked in, and stayed disciplined,” OSU junior guard Zach Reichle said about Oregon State’s second half defense. Reichle scored 11 points, connecting on 3-5 three-point shots. 

After the Ducks shot 50% from the field in the first half, the Beavers limited Oregon to just 31% in the second half. Oregon senior guard Payton Pritchard was held to 16 points, shooting 7-21. 

“[I] was really impressed with our toughness, especially the last 10 minutes,” OSU head coach Wayne Tinkle said. “Defensively on the glass, our guys showed great character.”  

On the other side of the court, Oregon State was able to break down the Ducks’ zone defense for shots close to the rim. OSU senior forward Kylor Kelley threw down an alley-oop dunk to tie the game at 42 with 11 minutes remaining. Kelley finished the game with 14 points and two blocks. 

OSU senior forward Tres Tinkle struggled offensively, ending the game with 13 points while shooting 4-13. Despite these offensive struggles, Tinkle contributed by securing six rebounds, five assists and three steals.

With just over a minute left of play and the Beavers up by two, Reichle hit a three-pointer to put the nail in the coffin. With Oregon State leading 55-50, the Ducks were forced to foul to get the ball back. In the last three minutes, the Beavers went 9-9 from the free throw line and were 92% for the game.  

 “I think tonight’s game is going to go a long way with our guys really buying in to having each other’s back, holding each other accountable and believing.” Wayne Tinkle said. 

The Beavers look to continue this momentum at home versus Utah on Feb. 13, but the Civil War rivalry will continue later in the season. As the Beavers have carried over two wins from the 2018-19 season, the upset over the No. 14 Ducks sets the stage for a potential gain to a four-game win streak in the rivalry. 

Oregon State will travel to Oregon on Feb. 27 for the final Men’s Basketball Civil War matchup for the season with a 8 p.m. tipoff.

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