The Stanford Cardinal came into tonight's matchup with the Oregon State Beavers looking to avoid a third consecutive sub-.500 record in Pac-10 play. On a chilly, snowy night in Corvallis, the visitors were on fire early on, capitalizing on Oregon State turnovers, but again couldn't hold on as the Beavers erupted from the field, shooting 68% in the second half, to outlast Stanford 87-80 in Corvallis Thursday night. Oregon State moved to 10-16, 5-10 in the conference, while Stanford dropped to 13-14, 6-10 in Pac-10 play.
After Calvin Haynes drained a long three-pointer from the right wing with the shot clock winding down to give Oregon State a two-point lead with 2:20 to go, a nifty pass by Jarrett Mann to Dwight Powell with the subsequent layup tied it up at 77. The Beavers wasted no time, setting up Jared Cunningham who went baseline for the hard layup and the foul from Powell to put OSU up 80-77 with 1:29 left. Anthony Brown missed an open right corner three-pointer that would have tied it up again, giving Oregon State a chance for more points. Lathan Wallace missed a three-pointer, but Devon Collier gobbled up the offensive rebound and put it back in for two, giving OSU a five-point lead with 33 ticks left. A quick possession led to a Josh Owens layup and after Cunningham made his one free throw (one was waved off to a lane violation), Jeremy Green went to the line after going strong to the basket. Green made the first, but missed the second. Collier got the rebound and found Cunningham streaking to the basket for the game-sealing dunk with 15 seconds left in the game.
Stanford finished the evening making 53% of their field goals, including 52% outside the arc, while making 69% (9-13) of their free throws. Oregon State concluded the game shooting 62% from the field, 47% from beyond the three-point line and 70% inside the line, and shot 88% (14-16) at the charity stripe. The Beavers outrebounded the Cardinal 27-23 while notching 19 assists and 15 turnovers, while the visitors tallied 20 assists and 14 turnovers.
With Stanford up eight, Oregon State turned up the defensive pressure, causing consecutive turnovers that led to layups and a lead that shrunk to two. Five in a row for Stanford stopped the bleeding, but the defense continued to give the Cardinal fits and another spate of miscues allowed OSU to tie the score up at 65 midway through the second half. After a media break, Brown drained two free throws to put Stanford up two momentarily, but a Wallace drive tied the score up again. Once again, the Cardinal attempted to run away, scoring six straight after long misses by the Beavers, but a three-point play from Haynes on a jumper and a fast break off a turnover for Cunningham trimmed the lead down to one, 73-72. After a turnover by Stanford led to a Burton layup putting OSU back up by one, head coach Johnny Dawkins called timeout to gather his troops for the stretch run.
Oregon State was led by Cunningham's 21 points on 6-8 shooting. He was followed by 14 from Haynes and 12 from Roberto Nelson off the bench. Stanford was led by Green's 24 on 9-14 shooting. Next in line was Aaron Bright with 15 points on a perfect 5-5 night from the outside the arc, followed by 12 from Brown. Mann had 10 assists versus just three turnovers for the night.
Green opened up the second half with a drive and left-handed hoop to run up the lead to eight, but Oregon State would not back down, going on a 9-3 streak before the first media timeout to squeeze the advantage down to two, 46-44. Cunningham canned a three-pointer from the right wing that knotted the score up at 47 and a Burton three-point play the old fashioned way put the Beavers up for the first time in the game. This seemed to be the wake-up call Stanford needed as Green scored seven straight and Bright dialed long distance twice around a bucket by OSU to place Stanford back up eight, 60-52, and giving the Beavers no choice but to call timeout.
Stanford started out the game red hot, turning four Beavers turnovers into seven points, and grabbing a 14-6 lead as the home team took a quick timeout to try to stem the tide. It worked temporarily as OSU scored six in a row, but three-pointers by Brown and Bright pushed the lead back up to eight. The Cardinal's lead grew to as high as 13 midway through the first half before Oregon State used a long run to chip away at the advantage, closing to within two, 33-31, with 3:25 remaining. Long balls by Bright and Brown again, though, helped keep Stanford ahead going into the half, 41-35.
Stanford next visits the Oregon Ducks, defeated by Cal, 81-71, on Saturday afternoon at 3:00pm.
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