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WBB Begins Season with Saturday Exhibition

Oct 31, 2013

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Oregon State women’s basketball season kicks off on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 1 p.m. when the Beavers host Saint Martin’s in an exhibition at Gill Coliseum.

The game will be streamed live on Oregon State’s Pac-12.com channel at this link. Updates will also be available through the live stats portal on osubeavers.com as well as by following the team on Twitter @OregonStateWBB. There will be no radio coverage of Saturday’s exhibition.

The contest, OSU’s lone tune-up before starting regular-season play next Friday, features tickets available at discounted prices. Both reserved and general admission seats can be purchased for just $5 by visiting beavertickets.com, calling 1-800-GO-BEAVS or visiting the Oregon State Athletic Ticket Office located at Gill Coliseum.

Prior to tip-off, kids are invited to the OSU Basketball Center to shoot hoops on the new women’s court from 12:15-1 p.m. OSU’s four-member freshman class will also be signing autographs after the game.  

Oregon State returns 75 percent of its scoring in the form of seven letterwinners in 2013-14, including its top three individual offensive performers from a season ago in sophomore Jamie Weisner (12.5 ppg), junior Ali Gibson (9.1 ppg) and senior Alyssa Martin (7.2 ppg).

As a freshman, Weisner carried a considerable load for the Beavers and was named to the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team and tabbed All-Pac-12 Honorable Mention for her efforts. She became just the fourth OSU freshman to lead her team in scoring and the fifth in OSU history to amass totals of 350 points and 150 rebounds in a season.

She led the team with four double-doubles and 21 games in double-figures scoring, including five games of more than 20 points, which all came in conference. She was one of only three pure guards in the Pac-12 to have at least four double-doubles and was also one of just three freshmen in the top 20 in the league in both scoring and rebounding. Her .372 3-point field goal percentage was second in the conference and the fifth-best single-season mark in school history. She was twice named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week.

Her return is supplemented by the experience of Oregon State’s only two upperclassmen in Gibson and Martin. Martin comes back for her senior season as the Pac-12’s active leader in 3-point field goals with 127, which is third all-time at Oregon State. Gibson isn’t far behind, with 96 career makes from deep, tied for seventh in OSU history.

Their leadership will be crucial for a squad which features nine underclassmen. This year’s sophomores comprised one of the greatest freshman classes in OSU history in 2012-13. Weisner, Deven Hunter, Ruth Hamblin, Samantha Siegner and Khadidja Toure played 42 percent of the Beavers’ minutes last season and were responsible for 46 of their scoring.

That production was the third-most out of a group of OSU freshmen in program history, trailing only the first-year crews from 1992-93 (53.4 percent) and 1977-78 (63.6 percent). Each of those classes matured to lead the Beavers to winning percentages above .600 during their sophomore campaigns.

In addition to Weisner’s scoring, Deven Hunter led OSU in rebounding, becoming the seventh freshman to do so with an average of 6.1 per game. It was only the third season in program history freshmen had led the squad in both points and rebounds.

A year after landing a recruiting class ranked as high as 17th in the nation, Rueck and his staff brought in another highly-regarded group to Corvallis in Breanna Brown, Gabriella Hanson, Kolbie Orum and Sydney Wiese. Brown and Wiese are the third and fourth top-100 recruits to choose the Beavers in the last two seasons, joining Weisner and Siegner, and all four will play integral roles in 2013-14.

Wiese, who scored over 2,000 points in high school, is the reigning Arizona Big Schools Girls Basketball Player of the Year; Brown won back-to-back state titles at Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland, Calif.; Orum is the fifth all-time leading scorer in British Columbia prep history; and Hanson has spent the past three summers playing for Swedish National Teams.

With those additions, Oregon State will aim to continue the superb defense which has become its staple under head coach Scott Rueck. The Beavers set a school record last season, holding opponents to 34.6 percent shooting from the floor, the 16th best mark in the nation. OSU also led the conference in blocks for the third consecutive year in 2012-13, averaging 5.5 per game, which ranked 11th in the country.

OSU and Saint Martin’s met last season on Dec. 9 in Gill Coliseum in what was an 84-36 Beaver win. Ruth Hamblin led all scorers in that game with 16 points on 8-for-13 shooting, to go along with six rebounds and four blocks. Jamie Weisner added 14 points and six boards, while Ali Gibson chipped in 10 points of her own.

Oregon State’s regular season kicks off with a home tilt against Corban on Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m.