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Exhibition Time for Oregon State Men's Basketball

The Oregon State men's basketball team started out Coach Wayne Tinkle's OSU career with a 57 to 47 exhibition loss to the Western Oregon Wolves. But even with their struggles some interesting highlights did occur around the return of Gary Payton (this time Gary Payton II) to Ralph Miller Court.

He's Back in the House!  Well Gary Payton was indeed there tonight but the highlight was seeing his son Gary Payton II play well in his opening game for Oregon State
He's Back in the House! Well Gary Payton was indeed there tonight but the highlight was seeing his son Gary Payton II play well in his opening game for Oregon State
Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

All in all it was about what was to be expected as the Beavs move themselves into the transition season between head coaches.   Though there were some pretty troubling standouts there were also some interesting surprises.  That all said though one needs to keep it in the "exhibition" perspective too, and how much of the good and bad surprises are to be foreshadowing of later play will be determined as we move into the regular season next Friday.

The most troubling aspect was the overall lack of offensive scoring and terrible free throwing shooting.  Indeed the Beavs only shot 16 for 45 from the field (35.6%), and seemingly a good number of these baskets in the second half were on put backs on badly missed initial shots.   Oregon State also only shot 3 for 13 from the 3-point arc, two of them were made by freshman Dylan Livesay, so that in of itself was a bright spot surprise.   From the foul line the Beavs only shot 12-26 (46.2%).  Additionally the Beavers turned the ball over a whooping 21 times (versus 9 coming from the Wolves side).

The other side of the ball though the team did seem to play a bit sharper, and did limit Western Oregon to a shooting percentage of 29%.  If the Oregon State offensive could have generated any ball control and scoring the final would have been different, with the Wolves shooting it a total of 62 times versus OSU's 45.  The defense was not perfect and some of the trap situations did bring back memories of wide open 3-pointers from the previous few years, but the zone defense did play decent.

The definite surprise, or maybe it really is not that big of a surprise, was the play of Gary Payton II, who in his first game on the court his father made his name on co-led the OSU scorers with 10 points (Malcolm Duvivier also had 10 points) and also had 10 rebounds and 6 assists.   Payton II looked a bit scattered in the beginning, but one could see him find his game legs and he was a presence on the court making steals, running the break, making fouls, making hustle plays on both sides of the ball, blocking shots, and putting down a couple sweet slam dunks.

For the game the Beavs came out starting Payton II, Olaf Schaftenaar, Langston Morris-Walker, Cheikh N'diaye, and Malcolm Duvivier.   Beyond that redshirt freshman Matt Dahlen, junior Jarmal Reid, Dylan Livesay, and junior Victor Robbins (who had some nice put back baskets on offensive rebounds) all got some substantial minutes off the bench.  Redshirt freshman Alex Roth and sophmore AJ Hedgecock also contributed some playing time.

Daniel Gomis did not play, and Coach Tinkle announced that Gomis has a torm muscle in his shoulder, and will miss about 6 weeks.

This will make Schaftenaar all the more important. The sometimes 3 point specialist big man had only 3 points against Western, but did grab 9 rebounds, and had 4 blocked shots.

From what could be seen on the live stream it looked like an actually decent crowd for an exhibition game, and this maybe was to be expected too with it being the opening game of Coach Tinkle's tenure at Oregon State.

In the end the Beavs were able to come back and make things a bit interesting towards the end of the game.  They did not start out well at all going down 7 to 0 before Gary Payton II scored the first OSU basket of the game, and they were down at half 32 to 19.  But at about the just under ten minute mark the Beavs were able to get the Western Oregon lead to single digits again, and actually were able to later cut the lead down to six points, but poor free throw shooting and then a foul/technical foul combination put the game away for the Wolves at the end.

Andy Avgi led all scorers, with 21 points, and Jordan Wylie added 12 for the Wolves.

But heck we did get to see Gary Payton ("The Glove") get some playing time as halftime entertainment, and if tonight's game was any indicator his son will see a good amount of time on Ralph Miller Court for the upcoming season.