With the Beavers just outside of ESPN’s latest bracketology, the Oregon State women needed a big win over the USC Trojans tonight to keep themselves in the postseason conversation. It looked like OSU was in for another frustrating, low scoring performance tonight, before a legendary performance from Talia Von Oelhoffen and some overtime heroics from Kennedy Brown gave the Beavers a much needed victory. Oregon State improves to 10-5 overall, and 3-2 in Pac-12 play.
USC jumped out to a quick lead thanks in part to five fast points from Bella Perkins. Talia Von Oelhoffen found her rhythm quickly however, hitting back to back threes to give the Beavers the lead. Von Oelhoffen had a huge first quarter, with 10 of the Beavers 18 points. USC grabbed the lead back quickly, and 7 points from Alyson Miura in the closing minutes put them up 22-18 after one.
Oregon State couldn’t find any room offensively to open the second, with USC blanking the Beavers for the first four minutes of the quarter. USC pulled out to a 26-18 lead before an Emily Codding three ended the Beavers scoring drought. A pair of free throws cut the USC lead to four, but the Beavers continued to struggle with their shooting. The Trojans also had issues hitting their shots, but managed to pull out to a 30-22 lead. A Tea Adams jumper in the closing seconds of the quarter cut that to a six point, 30-26 USC lead at the half.
Both teams continued to struggle offensively in the third, but the Beavers started to work their way back to even. After a Jordyn Jenkins layup, Oregon State went on a six point run, capped by an AJ Marotte three, to get within two points. Then it was USC’s turn to go on a run, with the Trojans outscoring the Beavers 10-2 go up 42-32 in the closing minutes of the quarter. A pair of driving layups from Talia Von Oelhoffen and Taya Corosdale cut the USC lead to six, 42-36, as the third quarter ended.
Talia Von Oelhoffen finally managed to find her way back into the game in the fourth, hitting two three pointers and a pair of free throws to once again get the Beavers within one point of the Trojans. USC began pulling away again, with Raiyah Marshall the hero of the last few minutes. After 12 points from Von Oelhoffen, Taya Corosdale became the second Beaver to score points in the quarter, cutting the USC lead to 5 with a pair of free throws.
Another foul put Talia Von Oelhoffen at the line, and she nailed her shots to get the Beavers to within three. A miss from Desiree Caldwell gave Oregon State possession back, and Talia hit a three to tie the game for the first time since the first quarter. Both teams had chances to score as regulation wound down, but strong defensive stops from each side sent the game to overtime.
USC scored first in OT, with a Jordyn Jenkins layup, but a layup from Kennedy Brown, followed by a Taya Corosdale layup off a turnover, gave Oregon State their first lead since the first quarter. Jenkins tied the game for USC again, but OSU got the lead back with a pair of Kennedy Brown free throws. Clarice Akunwafo tied it for the Trojans, and as the seconds ticked down Oregon State had one last chance to end it before a second overtime.
After some quick ball movement, Ellie Mack took the shot for the Beavers with 2 seconds left on the clock. Rayah Marshall got her hands on the ball for the block, and it looked like we had more basketball coming, but Kennedy Brown grabbed the rebound out of Marshall’s hands, and put it up with less than a second left to make the layup, and give the Beavers a 63-61 win.
It was an incredible night from Talia Von Oelhoffen, who put in a career high in scoring. When no other Beavers could find ways to score, Talia carried the team. Of the 18 points the Beavers scored in the first quarter, Von Oelhoffen scored 10. Of the 19 points the Beavers scored in the fourth, Talia scored 17! She finished the night with a total of 31 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists.
In addition to securing the win in overtime, Kennedy Brown was second in scoring for OSU with 11 points and 8 rebounds. No other Beaver broke double digits, but Jelena Mitrovic managed a noticeable defensive game, with 4 blocks and 5 rebounds.
The next game on the Beavers schedule is a Sunday matchup with UCLA, currently scheduled for 2:00 PM PT, but the Bruins just had to cancel their Friday game against Oregon due to Covid-19 issues. For now, their contest with the Beavers remains set for Sunday, but things could change in the next couple days.