The Beavers improved to 3-2 on Saturday with a 84-74 win against the Howard Bison. The Beavers are now on a two-game winning streak after knocking off Charlotte last Wednesday. The game was played in front of 1,825 people, including President of the United States Barack Obama, at Burr Gymnasium.
Omari Johnson led the Beavers with 17 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 steals.
Jared Cunningham and Joe Burton both had 15 points, while Cunningham recorded 3 rebounds to Burton's 6. Ahmad Starks had 13 points and 3 assists.
Despite scoring 84 points, the Beavers had an ugly first half. Oregon State would make a quick run, but follow it up with some ice cold shooting. If it wasn't for an Ahmad Starks three point buzzer-beater, the Beavers would have trailed 33-29 at Halftime instead of 33-32.
For the Bison, Dadrian Collins led the way minutes-wise, with 36. Anton Dickerson led Howard with 24 points, followed by Collins with 15. The Bison came into this game with a record of 1-4 after defeating Bowling Green and losing to Purdue, Delaware, St. Francis (N.Y.), and American.
Five games into the season, it is apparent that two Freshmen are in front of the others: Devon Collier and Ahmad Starks. Collier has started the last two games, and he is averaging 10 minutes per game with 3.4 points. Starks has came off the bench all season, averaging 8.8 ppg.
The Beavers led Howard in alomst every category, except in 2nd chance points. Howard led there 16-7, while the Beavers had 26 bench points to the Bison's 16.
Down by one at Halftime, the Beavers started the 2nd Half on a 4-0 run to take a 36-33 lead. The game went back and forth from there, until Ahmad Starks buried a huge three to put the Beavers up by seven at 53-46. The Bison threatened a couple more times, cutting the Beaver lead to six with 3 minutes to play. But the Beavers would make their free throws down the stretch, and Joe Burton put the game away with a thunderous dunk with 8 seconds left.
With the win, the Beavers improved to 3-2. Oregon State is now 2-1 on their yearly Washington DC trips, with their only loss coming in 2008.
As far as the crowd goes, Beaver commentator John Warren estimated 100 Beaver fans were in attendance, including Barack and Michelle Obama. With the students back from Thanksgiving Break, hopefully Gill Coliseum will be loud on Wednesday.
Next up for the Beavers are the Utah Valley Wolverines, Wednesday at 7:00 PM in Corvallis, Oregon.