ASU outlasts OSU 72-62
Published: Friday, January 11, 2013
Updated: Friday, January 11, 2013 03:01
This one was about to get ugly.
After leading for most of the first half, Oregon State fell behind by 15 points with 14:18 left in the game and most of Gill Coliseum called it a night early, giving up on the Beavers (10-5 overall, 0-2 Pac-12).
OSU head coach Craig Robinson and his squad didn’t give up though. The head coach inserted a never-before-used lineup of Challe Barton, Langston Morris-Walker, Jarmal Reid, Olaf Schaftenaar and Devon Collier and the Beavers promptly went on a 14-3 run to make a game of it, before finally succumbing to the Sun Devils (14-2, 3-0) 72-62 on Thursday night.
“They were the ones who were playing the way we needed to play in order to come back at that time,” Robinson said. “I didn’t predetermine I was going to put that lineup in. I went by the feel of the game, and those were the guys who were getting the work done and they did a fantastic job.”
Reid — who is averaging 2.2 points, 1.8 rebounds and 14.9 minutes per game this season — had a career night with six points and 11 rebounds in 26 minutes. His play, especially on defense, was a huge factor in keeping this game from getting too out of hand for Oregon State.
Despite his efforts, the Beavers could never regain the lead they had in the first half, which got to be as high as eight points with 5:41 to play in the first half. He might only be a freshman, but Reid offered some insight as to what needs to happen if the Beavers want to go from a competitive team to a winning team.
“It’s just about picking everybody up,” Reid said. “When teams face adversity they tend to crumble and it just takes one voice to pick a team up.”
With senior center Angus Brandt out for the season, the Beavers got a bigger dose of adversity on Thursday night when it was announced that sophomore forward Eric Moreland and freshman guard Victor Robbins would not play for OSU. Both are suspended indefinitely for “a violation of team rules,” according to Robinson.
Moreland — who has started every game this season and is averaging 11.2 rebounds per game — would have been a big help for the Beavers on the boards. ASU outrebounded Oregon State 49-35, including 16 offensive boards for the Sun Devils.
“It was the offensive rebounds that killed us. They kept on getting second shots,” Collier said. “We’ve just got to come out tougher and be hungry. We’ve got to want it and just not let it come to us, and once we get that through our head we’ll start being the tougher team.”
Collier extended his streak of scoring in double figures to 10 consecutive games, with 18 points against the Sun Devils. It wasn’t enough though as he and Ahmad Starks (10 points) were the only players in double figures on a Beavers team that shot just 37.3% from the field in the game.
Although there were some silver linings in Thursday’s loss — Barton played a career high in minutes and had a career high for field goals made — there are a multitude of areas Oregon State needs to improve in if they want to make the postseason or even finish in the upper half of the conference.
The Beavers only shot 5-for-22 on 3-pointers and once again were outscored in the paint. How can the Beavers right the ship? Collier says communication is key.
“We’re playing good defense but its just the communication that is not there yet,” Collier said. “We see the underclassmen, when they came in, we see how they communicated and played hard and brought us back. But when we stopped communicating, that’s when Arizona State got on their run. So that tells us that we’ve just got to keep on communicating every time through the 40 minutes, and if we don’t that’s when teams are going to take us apart.”
Things aren’t going to get any easier for Oregon State any time soon. It is unknown right now when Moreland and Robbins will be back and No. 4 Arizona comes to town on Saturday fresh off their first loss of the season to Oregon Thursday night. Coach Robinson said the team just needs to get into practice tomorrow and make sure they stay confident and don’t dwell on this loss.
“You might be able to avoid [another stumble],” Robinson said. “You just go back to work ... there’s not much else you can do. If I had a magic potion for this I would have used it like four years ago.”
Alex Crawford, sports reporter
On Twitter @dr_crawf