Washington at Oregon State men's basketball: Game preview, key storylines and how to watch

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Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports | OSU Athletics

Who: Washington at Oregon State

When: Saturday, Jan. 26 at 1 p.m. PT/ 2 p.m. MT

On the call: JB Long and PJ Carlesimo on Pac-12 Oregon, Pac-12 Washington and Pac-12 Network

Where: Corvallis, Oregon

The Oregon State Beavers and Washington Huskies will face off in Corvallis this Saturday in the Pac-12 Networks’ Men’s Basketball Game of the Week. With an undefeated 6-0 record in Pac-12 play for the first time since 1983-84 and an eight-game win streak this season, the Washington Huskies are a force to be reckoned with as they look to continue their historic run. But while the Huskies are undoubtedly hot this season, who can forget the last time these teams met at Gill Coliseum?

No. 9 Washington (15-4 overall, 6-0 in Pac-12)

The Huskies, who added to their win streak with a solid 61-56 victory over the Ducks on Thursday night, are currently sitting at the head of the Pac-12 Conference standings. But whether or not UW’s success this season is due to a relaxed schedule is yet to be determined.

The last time Washington faced Oregon State in Corvallis the outcome was a devastating one for the Huskies, as OSU shocked UW 69-66 on a buzzer-beater in overtime and extinguished any hopes of an NCAA tournament bid. Now, as Washington eyes the tournament this season they’ll look to lean on the elite defensive playmaking of senior Matisse Thybulle, who is averaging 2.3 blocks and 2.7 steals over the past six games, including 5 blocks against Cal last week. His strong numbers and top-notch defensive performances week after week earned him a spot on the Naismith DPOY watch list this year. As one of only two Pac-12 players on the list (OSU’s Kylor Kelley being the other), Thybulle will need to carry the momentum into Corvallis to give the Huskies a chance to secure the victory.

Washington will also need to see a big game from senior Noah Dickerson, who’s had a rough go so far this season. With almost all of his stats declining from last year - 15.5 ppg to 13.1, 8.4 rebounds to 6.5, .569 field goal percentage to .557 – Dickerson is struggling to manage the double and triple teams he’s yielding. Despite the attention he’s seeing on the court, Dickerson is still UW’s second leading scorer behind Jaylen Nowell, who’s averaging 16.8 ppg.

With the first leg of the road trip sealed, Washington will need to sweep in Oregon to have any chance at making an appearance in the tournamnet. 

Oregon State (12-6 overall, 4-2 in Pac-12)

While the UW may be OSU’s toughest Pac-12 opponent yet, the Beavers are coming off their own decisive 90-77 victory over Washington State on Thursday in Corvallis.

Tres Tinkle, who was one of three Beavers to score 20+ points against WSU on Thursday night, currently sits at 2nd in the Pac-12 in scoring and is averaging 20.4 points per game. If that wasn't enough, Tinkle has racked up 52-straight games with double-digit points and is tied for the 5th longest active streak among all D-1 players. Adding to his legacy, he was just as successful in the Beavers' three matchups against the Huskies last season, averaging 21 points, 9.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2 steals. 

To complement Tinkle’s record-breaking playmaking on offense, Stevie Thompson Jr. had his own impressive performance against Cougars. In addition to Tinkle’s 21 points, Thompson Jr. ended the night with 22 points, four 3-pointers, six rebounds and seven assists and is averaging 15.2 ppg on the season. Additionally, Thompson Jr.'s younger brother, Ethan Thompson is averaging 13.8 ppg and is the team's third-leading scorer by a wide margin. 

On the flip side, Kylor Kelley is having his own record-breaking defensive year, and just 17 games into his career with the Beavers the junior has shown he was worth the wait for OSU. While he already sits on the Beavers’ top-10 all-time block shots list, Kelley has racked up 70 blocks this season and is on track to break OSU’s single season block record (72) currently held by Eric Moreland (2012-13).

On the surface, Oregon State is the clear underdog in this matchup, but no matter the outcome Washington and Oregon State are sure to provide a game that won’t be anything short of wildly entertaining.   

Now on Pac-12 Network
3:00 PM PT

Airing on:

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