No. 9 OSU Women’s Basketball takes down No. 14 Utah in fourth quarter showdown

OSU sophomore guard Destiny Slocum goes high for the lay up over two Utah defenders. Slocum helped the Beavers earn the 71-63 win over the Utes by scoring 20 points, five assists and three steals on the night.

Canon Wright, News Contributor and Jarred Bierbrauer

On Sunday morning, No. 9 Oregon State Women’s Basketball raised their overall standing to 19-3 with a victory over No. 14 Utah in a showdown with a final score of 71-63.

The Beavers, now holding a 9-1 record in the Pac-12, stand firmly at second in the conference between No. 8 Stanford and No. 4 University of Oregon.

In the game, Utah took off to a 2-11 start before the first time out. OSU sophomore guard Destiny Slocum carried her team through the slow start however, scoring 18 points before half-time, 16 of which were in the second quarter alone.

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“We were just playing off of what they were giving us, they were giving us the basket in the second quarter,” Slocum said. “Just playing through the paint was our goal in the second quarter.”

With the energy of Gill Coliseum, Slocum was able to help bring the Beavers to a tie score of 28-28 by the end of the first half. OSU Head Coach Scott Rueck was impressed with Slocum’s performance.

“Destiny put us on her back a little bit in that second quarter to close the gap” Rueck said. “And then it was just contributions from everyone in the second half, and finding a way to win.”

In the second half, Utah began tightening up on defense, whereas Oregon State began pushing harder on offense. By the third quarter, Oregon’s players were sinking more shots, and Utah was matching those points, resulting in a back and forth tied game until the final five minutes of the fourth quarter.

After sitting out in OSU’s previous game against Colorado State, Oregon State junior guard Madison Washington made her presence clear by leading the team in total rebounds with eight on the night.

“She’s been a massive part of what we’ve done up to this point. It was weird not having her last night, it felt good to get her back out there,” Rueck said. “Her defense was great.”

With several free throw opportunities in the fourth quarter, it became clear that Oregon State would take the lead, and eventually the win. With a final game score of 71-63, the Beavers took home the victory, but are already looking towards their next game.

“We’re going to the bay,” Slocum said. “Which is going to be two tough games, and we’re focused on taking everything as it is.”

The Beavers will be taking on Stanford next Friday, Feb. 8 at 6 p.m. at Palo Alto.