HOOPS: Mystifying loss for Beavs

OSU ANNOUNCER MIKE PARKER described it as a "mystifying" loss. After all, WSU hadn't won a road game in conference play this year, Oregon State appeared to be on an upswing winning three of their past four and the oddsmakers had the Beavs heavily favored. But with about five minutes to go in the first half, it all fell apart in the 83-73 loss, the fourth consecutive defeat in the series for OSU.

About the only Beaver who gave WSU trouble was Jared Cunningham. He hit on 10 of 20 shots and went for a game-high 33 points.

But Cunningham found himself without much help, particularly on the defensive end.

Struggling point guard Reggie Moore had a career-high 11 assists and four steals against Oregon State, (15-9, 5-7 Pac-12) -- and 10 points. And the Cougars finished the first half on a 15-1 run, taking a 29-28 lead to a commanding 44-29 lead. OSU never made a serious run in the second half.

"It has been awhile since we've had a horrible outing, and this was a horrible outing," OSU coach Craig Robinson told the Register-Guard. "It's disappointing, because I really got the feeling we thought we could just show up and play.

How bad was it? Two other Cougars had near double-doubles - Brock Motum (24 points, 9 rebounds) and D.J. Shelton (a career-high 14 points and nine rebounds).

Motum you can understand, he's one of the Pac-12's best offensive players. But Shelton? His biggest claim to fame this season has been how fast can he get in foul trouble. He played three minutes combined last week.

The Beavs allowed the Cougars to shoot 51.9 percent from the field. They also outscored OSU 40-20 in the paint.

"I don't know what it was with our frontcourt," Robinson said. "I was trying to find a guy to come in and do something. ... Their frontcourt had a great night, and it's hard to win that way."

But a substantial turnover differential was what killed Oregon State. They entered the game with a plus-four advantage per game in that statistic, but had 11 giveaways at halftime to just three for WSU. The Cougars had a 22-3 edge in points off turnovers at the intermission.

That was too much even for a Beavers' squad that entered the game averaging 86 points per game.

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