Oregon State won 104-94 on Tuesday night behind 36 points from Nelson
Oregon State came out against Concordia in its second exhibition game of the season, trying to avoid the slow start they endured five days prior against Corban.
Instead of a slow start, the Beavers endured a slow first 33 minutes.
The Beavers took their first lead of the game with just 13 minutes remaining in the second half, when senior guard Roberto Nelson followed his own 3-point miss with a rebound and layup.
That was the first of nine lead changes in the second half, the last of which went OSU’s way as the Beavers ended up taking a 104-94 victory.
Nelson was not worried about the 10-point final differential.
“I’m not concerned at all,” he said. “We could have easily given up that game, that team could have beat us, and last year they would have beat us.”
Nelson kept Oregon State in the contest in the first half, and freshman guard Malcolm Duvivier provided a spark in the second.
Nelson had 10 of OSU’s first 15 points and 19 before the break. He finished with 36, what would have been a career high if it weren’t an exhibition game.
Duvivier had only two points in Oregon State’s first contest and had one point in the first half on Tuesday, but he exploded in the second half with 16 points and made a case for more minutes in the regular season.
“He’s been making a case in practice, which is why he got the opportunity today,” said head coach Craig Robinson. “I could have easily put in one of the older guys, but Malcolm’s playing great at practice.”
His 3-pointer with 50 seconds left in the game netted the first double-digit lead for OSU and he trailed only Nelson in scoring for the Beavers.
“I didn’t try to do anything out of the ordinary,” Duvivier said. “I just went with the flow of the game, and shots were coming to me.”
Nelson tied the game twice in the first half, including a pull-up 3-pointer with three seconds left before the break.
That tied the game at 43, but Concordia stayed in the game until the last minute.
Robinson called a timeout just two minutes after the break when the Cavaliers scored four straight to open the half.
The momentum did not change, and Concordia added four more points to its lead before another timeout at the 15:46 mark.
At that point, the Beavers found a spark and forced two straight turnovers, converting both into scores.
It was the first time the Beavers dictated the game, as the Cavaliers jumped out in front from the start — something Robinson said can’t become a trend.
After taking a quick two-point lead on their first possession, the Cavaliers’ Tyler Velasquez stepped in front of sophomore Victor Robbins’ pass in the backcourt and put Concordia up 4-0.
“I was really disappointed the way we started the game,” Robinson said. “(Concordia) came ready to win the game, and we were not even ready to play.”
Nelson noted that a different mindset will be needed for the regular season.
“There were some positives,” he said. “But we have got to play harder.”
Josh Worden, sports reporter
On Twitter @WordenJosh