Oregon St. (11-6, 1-4) at Arizona St. (5-11, 1-3) at the Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe at 6 PM MST (5 PM PST) / ROOT Sports NW / KEJO 1240 AM / KPAM 860 (Streamed)
Oregon St. wraps up their road trip to the desert with tonight's game in Tempe against Arizona St.
With the advent of the Pac-12's rotating schedule module, where some teams only meet once in the regular season, this year, the Oregon and Arizona schools only face each other once, in the desert.
The Beavers mounted a furious rally to take the lead in the late moments in Tucson Thursday night, as Ahmad Starks scored the last 10 points in regulation for Oregon St. But after Arizona's Kyle Fogg tied the game, Starks missed a 3 pointer that would have won the game, and the 'Cats went on to claim an 81-73 win after a fight-marred overtime.
The Sun Devils dropped a 67-58 decision to visiting Oregon Thursday night, despite getting a game high 23 points from Trent Lockett. That was also a season high individual scoring performance for Arizona St., and tied Lockett's career best scoring effort.
Jared Cunningham led Oregon St., with 22 points, in the Beavers' second consecutive loss in overtime, and Starks added 14, 10 of which came late in regulation when Starks was the only Oregon St. player to score down the stretch.
Joe Burton was ejected for coming off the bench in an effort to help separate the combatants in the melee that ensued after Kyle Fogg scored and was fouled by Cunningham, and proceeded to bump Cunningham in his celebration. After further review of game video by the Pac-12 offices on Friday, no further action was taken against players on either team. Burton potentially faced suspension, but the conference (correctly) noted that Burton did not engage in fighting, which would have warranted further action.
Against Oregon, after falling into a double digit deficit in the first half, Arizona St. pulled within one point midway in the second half, on a 3 pointer that made it 53-52 by Carrick Felix, who was the only other Sun Devil besides Lockett to finish in double figures, with 11 points.
Kyle Cain's free throw made it a 2 point game with 8 minutes left, but the Ducks used a 12-3 run the rest of the way to fly away with the win. Oregon's more balanced offense, in which Devoe Joseph led 4 Ducks in double figures, with 15 points, was what overcame Herb Sendek's offensively challenged Sun Devils. Arizona St. is 270th. in the NCAA in scoring, averaging 63.3 points per game. Oregon St., in contrast, is 5th. in the country in scoring, averaging 83.7 points per game.
So once again, the probability of who wins should shift from the Sun Devils toward the Beavers as the score goes up. Unless the last shot of the game, or an overtime period, is the deciding event.
Last year, Burton led Oregon St. to a 22 point 80-58 win in the team' first meeting, clear back in December of 2010, but the Beavers suffered an 80-66 loss to the Sun Devils in the rematch in Tempe, when coach Craig Robinson played only 6 players, while 6 others, including Cunningham, Starks, and Collier, served a one game suspension for missing curfew after the Arizona game.
Here's the place to discuss the road trip, and look ahead to the rest of the season.