The Stanford Cardinal came off a road trip that saw them play a rugged 60 minutes of hoops which resulted in missed shots, turnovers, and general terrible play. Fortunately, those last 20 minutes seemed to give the Farm Boys a needed boost of confidence that they could hang with most teams in the conference as they nearly came out of Pullman with a win after falling behind by 20 at the half. Using what Landry Fields called "outstanding defense," echoing what head coach Johnny Dawkins said to open up his post-game press conference, Stanford set the tone early versus the Oregon State Beavers, leaping out to a double-digit lead midway through the first half, then ran off 12 consecutive points in the second half to win by a final score of 59-35.
It was the least amount of points scored by a Stanford opponent since a 58-34 win versus Princeton in the 2005 version of the Pete Newell Challenge, while Oregon State had not scored fewer points since a 29-23 win over Oregon in Corvallis during the 1983-84 season, two seasons before the NCAA instituted a shot clock in all games. Stanford moves to 9-9, 3-3 in the Pac-10 for the season, while OSU falls to 8-10, 2-4 in league play.
Both teams started off somewhat cold from the field, but a Jeremy Green three-pointer on the opening possession showed that the Cardinal could handle the 1-3-1 Beavers zone from the outside. After the media timeout with Stanford down 8-7, the home team went on a 7-0 run over a 2:37 stretch, capped by a Landry Fields three-pointer off an assist from Drew Shiller. Two free throws by Da'Veed Dildy at the 9:08 mark provided Stanford with their first double-digit cushion of the evening at 20-10.
Jack Trotter, Green, and Fields helped keep the Beavers at bay with jumpers and layups, providing Stanford with a 26-17 advantage with just under four minutes remaining in the half, but Oregon State wasn't about to fold to a team it defeated three out of four times last season without a fight. Calvin Haynes, one of those thorns in the Cardinal's side during 2008-09, hit for five points in a row to cut the lead down to four with 2:35 left. A Trotter dunk off a sweet pass from the top of the key from Jarrett Mann stopped that momentum quickly. Neither team could make a shot as the squads combined to go 0-6 to end the half with Stanford up six, 28-22.
At the half, Stanford shot 42% from the field, 43% from beyond the arc (3-7), and was nearly perfect at the line, making five of six tries for an 83% clip. Oregon State made 38% of their field goal attempts, was just 1-5 from outside the three-point line, and made all three of their attempts from the free throw line. The Cardinal outrebounded the Beavers 16-12, dealt out six assists to OSU's two, and had one more turnover than the visitors, giving the ball up eight times to Oregon State's seven.
Individually, Stanford was led by Fields' 10 points and four rebounds. Fields was followed by Green's eight and Trotter's six. Haynes paced the Beavers with seven points on 3-8 shooting, followed closely by Seth Tarver's six points and freshman Jared Cunningham's five off the bench.
The second half started as the first half ended with both teams chucking the ball up in the air, but neither making anything of note. In fact, it is what they didn't make which made news as Daniel Deane and Fields managed to shoot back-to-back airballs on two-point jumpers. Fields, however, gobbled up his own rebound and hit a short one-handed shot from the left baseline to end a streak of 12 consecutive missed shots and give Stanford an eight-point lead. Both teams would each launch another airball during the first five minutes of the second half before Shiller hit a long three-pointer from just right of the top of the key to bring Stanford to their biggest lead of the night, 37-24, with 14:34 to go in the game.
Despite a couple of turnovers by Stanford, OSU was not able to chip away at the lead, letting Stanford continue to play loosely on the offensive end. The Cardinal turned that combination into some of their better basketball of the night as Trotter made a dunk off a Mann feed, Mater Daian grabbed an offensive rebound and put it right back in, Trotter and Mann hooked up again for two, and Green made good on a long trifecta over the zone to help the lead bulge to 16, 46-30. Shiller lassoed another loose ball and got an easy layup, prompting Oregon State head coach Craig Robinson to call a timeout as his team looked completely out of whack, down 18 to Stanford with under 8:32 remaining in the contest.
Coming out of the media timeout, Fields drove the baseline unimpeded to the basket, making the two-hand jam while getting fouled. He would miss the free throw, but even those didn't seem to faze Stanford this evening as a possession soon after exemplified for the crowd. Two straight missed by Mann, only one hitting even the backboard, was swiped in the paint by Daian, who put it in for the easy deuce as the shot clock was expiring. Fields drove in for another layup, this time completing the three-point play to place Stanford on top by 25, 55-30, with 5:48 to go in the contest. Oregon State would get no closer than 22 the rest of the way as they suffered through a scoreless stretch of 9:00 between buckets and an even more shocking 6:43 lag between attempted field goals, only getting two free throw attempts and eight turnovers for their lackluster effort in the second half.
Stanford shot 43% from the field, made just five of 20 shots from beyond the three-point line, and hit six of their eight free throw attempts (75%). Oregon State converted 37% of their shots from the field, made two of nine three-point attempts (22%), and were three for five (60%) at the charity stripe. The Cardinal outrebounded the Beavers 38-22, including 14-3 on the offensive end. This advantage led to a 14-0 blanking by Stanford of Oregon State in terms of second chance points. The Cardinal had 10 assists and 14 turnovers, while Oregon State tallied 19 turnovers and just three assists.
Stanford was led by Fields' 17 points and nine rebounds on 6-13 shooting from the field. Green scored 13 and Trotter netted 10 for the victors. The only player in double figures for Oregon State was Seth Tarver who scored 10 for the Beavers. Haynes tallied nine and Cunningham scored eight for OSU.
On Saturday evening, Stanford will go for their second consecutive sweep on
their home floor as they take on head coach Ernie Kent and the Oregon Ducks for
a chance to go back above .500 in conference play. Stay tuned to The
Bootleg for Kevin Danna's awesome "And 1" column!
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