Corvallis, OR – The Oregon State (21-5, 11-3) women snapped No. 2-ranked Oregon’s 17-game winning streak, handing the Ducks their first Pac-12 loss in a tightly contested game played before a sold-out crowd of 9,301 at Gill Coliseum. The Beavers connected on eight straight free throw attempts in the closing minutes to take away a 67-62 victory. Aleah Goodman led the Beavers with 22 points, connecting on four three-pointers and making all six of her free throws. Point guard Destiny Slocum added 20 points including a key late three-pointer that put the Beavers up by five points. Sabrina Ionescu led Oregon (24-2, 13-1) with 21 points but forced quite a few shots, She was an inefficient 9-of-25 from the field including 0-of-6 on 3s.
Oregon took a 52-50 lead on an Ionescu jumper with 6:19 left but the Beavers came back with seven straight points to take control. Mikayla Pivec (11 points, 11 rebounds, five assists) made an impressive lay-up with her left hand as she fell to the floor to tie the score. Then Slocum followed with two baskets with her three-pointer extending the Beavers lead to 57-52. The game got tight near the close as Goodman fouled Ionescu on a three-point attempt. Ionescu made all three shots to cut Oregon State’s lead to 63-62. After Slocum made two free throws Oregon still had six seconds remaining to try to tie the score on a three-pointer. The Ducks inbounded the ball to Ionescu as the Beavers’ Katie McWilliams approached her quickly, likely intending to foul. The move surprised Ionescu, causing her to shuffle her feet, ending any chance Oregon had.
The game may prove costly to Oregon as starting All-American center Ruthy Hebard left the game with a knee injury midway through the second quarter. Hebard had eight points and four rebounds in 13 minutes and Oregon obviously missed her inside scoring. The Ducks went to a small lineup most of the rest of the way with 6-2 Erin Boley playing in the post and freshman guard Taylor Chavez logging 22 minutes. That was a lot of size to give up to Oregon State’s centers, 6-8 Joanna Grymek and 6-7 Patricia Morris. The two combined for ten rebounds in 29 minutes as the Beavers out-rebounded the Ducks by nine.
Hebard is obviously an important piece to Oregon’s post-season hopes. When asked about Hebard’s injury in the postgame press conference coach Kelly Graves could only comment that “it doesn’t look good…we’re going to pray…that she is better”. Hebard will have an MRI today. Oregon doesn’t have a deep bench and if Hebard is gone for an extended time they may lack the size and depth to get to what may have been a Final Four.
Oregon State got off to a 31-20 first half lead but the Ducks cut the deficit to 33-27 at halftime on a Maite Cazorla three-pointer and a Boley lay-up. Oregon lost despite committing only three turnovers compared to 15 for the Beavers. Slocum had seven turnovers. Oregon State guarded the perimeter well all night especially after Hebard went down. Oregon shot only 35.8 percent (24-of-67) from the field including 22.7 percent (5-of-22) from three. The Beavers shot 48 percent from the field, 32 percent (7-of-22) on 3s and a perfect 12-of-12 from the charity stripe. Oregon State won the game despite taking 17 fewer field goal attempts.
The two teams stay home to face USC and UCLA this coming week.