Men's Basketball Begins Road Trip At Oregon State Thursday
Feb. 17, 2009
Stanford Cardinal (15-8, 4-8 Pac-10)
Oregon State Beavers (11-13, 5-8 Pac-10)
The Opening Tip
Still in search of its first Pac-10 road win, Stanford (15-8 4-8 Pac-10) embarks on the first of two remaining road trips in league play when it faces Oregon State (11-13, 5-8 Pac-10) on Thursday in Corvallis. Not only is the Cardinal looking to snap a six-game losing streak on the road in conference competition, but a win over Oregon State would avenge a 77-62 loss to the Beavers at Maples Pavilion last month. And with only six games left in the regular season, Stanford will need to pick up wins quickly for a shot at the postseason.
Thursday's game can be heard live on KTRB AM 860 and Stanford's official athletics website, www.gostanford.com, featuring the chemistry-rich tandem of Dave Flemming (play-by-play) and John Platz (analyst). There is no television coverage for this contest.
This week's road trip concludes Saturday night against Oregon (6-19, 0-13 Pac-10). Stanford returns to Maples Pavilion next week for its final two home games.
Scouting Oregon State
One year after finishing 6-25 overall and 0-18 in Pac-10 play, Oregon State (11-13, 5-8 Pac-10) has shown improvement under first-year head coach Craig Robinson. The Beavers snapped a three-game losing streak when they squeaked by Washington State 54-52 last Saturday. Oregon State, 7-7 at home this year, have not won a game at Gill Coliseum since a 57-54 victory over Oregon back on Jan. 31. Oregon State is averaging only 59.4 points per game but the Beavers are connecting on 46.0 percent from the field. However, Oregon State is allowing only 62.2 points per game, averaging 28.6 rebounds per game and shooting just 62.6 percent from the charity stripe. Make sure to watch: Calvin Haynes (15.2 ppg, 46.7 percent from the field), Roeland Schaftenaar (9.2 ppg, 46.0 percent from the field, 71 assists, 22 steals) and Omari Johnson (8.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg).
Stanford All-Time vs. Oregon State
Oregon State owns a 69-58 edge in the all-time series, which dates back to 1915. Despite the Beavers' 77-62 upset victory at Maples Pavilion last month, Stanford has won six of the last seven overall and 17 of the last 19 meetings overall since 1999. Fourteen of Stanford's last 17 wins in the series have come by double-digits.
Who To Watch Against Oregon State
Lawrence Hill has averaged 14.1 points and 4.1 rebounds per game in seven career meetings. Hill has made more three-pointers (12) against the Beavers than any other Pac-10 club. He did most of his damage during his sophomore season, with a 24-point, eight-rebound performance on the road and a 23-point, seven-rebound effort at home. Josh Owens is a perfect 4-4 from the field in three games while Mitch Johnson is just 5-24 from the field in six games.
This Trip, Last Year
This was the first Pac-10 road trip of the year in 2008 and it resulted in a split. Stanford opened the swing by routing Oregon State 66-46, holding the Beavers to just 20 first-half points and 30.4 percent shooting from the field. Next up was a nationally-televised CBS game in Eugene on Sunday afternoon, and it was Oregon that prevailed 71-66. Brook Lopez scored 20 of his 26 points in the first half to single-handedly keep Stanford within striking distance but the Ducks hung on in the final minutes.
Down The Stretch
With six conference games remaining, Stanford is in danger of finishing with its first sub-.500 record in Pac-10 play since a 2-16 ledger during the 1992-93 campaign. Stanford's eight losses in league play are the most since the club posted a 10-8 mark two years ago before eventually qualifying for the NCAA Tournament. For the first time in 15 years, the first half of Pac-10 play proved to be a struggle as well. Stanford checked in 3-6 at the turn, representing the first time since 1992-93 (1-8 through the first rotation) that the Cardinal had not tallied at least six victories in the first nine conference games.
What About The Big Picture?
While Stanford will need to win its remaining six games in order to ensure a winning record in Pac-10 play, the Cardinal can keep two lengthy streaks alive by winning just one more game. Stanford's next victory will (1) guarantee a winning record for the 16th consecutive season and (2) give the Cardinal at least 16 wins for the 16th straight year. Keep on winning games, and Stanford can extend another streak to 16 years in a row: qualifying for postseason play.
Not This Time Around
While Stanford is off to an uncharacteristically slow start in league play, the Cardinal has continued to show improvement in some areas. Whether it be simply a matter of limiting offensive touches or employing a different defensive strategy, Stanford has been able to slow the progress of the opposing team's leading scorer during the first three games in the second half of Pac-10 competition.
Leading Scorer (Opponent).....First Meeting.....Second Meeting
Taylor Rochestie (Washington St.).....21 pts., 6 reb., 8-9 FT, 39 min.....7 pts, 1 reb., 2-3 FT, 33 min.
Jon Brockman (Washington).....19 pts., 18 reb., 8-21 FG, 30 min.....13 pts., 12 reb., 5-7 FG, 37 min.
Jamal Boykin (California).....22 pts., 7 reb., 10-13 FG, 34 min.....11 pts., 2 reb., 5-9 FG, 16 min.
Comeback Was A Rarity
California's 82-75 comeback victory last weekend represented the first time this year Stanford lost a game when leading at the 5:00 mark of the second half. The last time the Cardinal dropped a game when leading with five minutes remaining was Mar. 6, 2008, when UCLA turned a 56-47 deficit into a 77-67 overtime victory at Pauley Pavilion.