Saturday , Feb , 24 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

Cougars visit Beavers in key Pac-10 affair

Corvallis, OR (Sports Network) – Fresh off a disappointing loss, the ninth-
ranked Washington State Cougars will attempt to bounce back against the
Oregon State Beavers in a Pac-10 Conference clash.

Washington State dropped a 64-59 decision to Oregon on Thursday, halting a
five-game winning streak. The Cougars remain alone in second place in the
league standings, but they are unlikely to catch UCLA to win the regular
season crown, as the Bruins hold a two-game lead with only three games to

Oregon State owns a 3-13 conference record, and only Arizona State has
struggled more since the start of Pac-10 play. On a positive note, the Beavers
have managed to win two of their last four outings, including a 73-65 triumph
over Washington on Thursday.

Washington State recorded a 70-55 victory over Oregon State back on January
25th, overshadowing the fact that the Beavers own a 161-112 advantage in the
all-time series.

Washington State shot 52.2 percent from the floor against Oregon, and the
Cougars also earned a slight rebounding advantage. They even limited the Ducks
to 40 percent overall shooting, but there are a couple of obvious reasons that
Oregon finished on top. Washington State turned the ball over 14 times and was
only able to force seven giveaways. Also, the Cougars hit five fewer three-
pointers than their counterparts while also scoring four fewer points from the
foul line. Daven Harmeling scored 15 points for WSU, and Kyle Weaver added 14
points. Derrick Low was held in check, but he continues to pace the Cougars
with 14.0 ppg. The versatile Weaver checks in with 11.3 ppg, 5.4 rpg and 4.9
apg, and Harmeling is scoring 10.2 ppg. While Washington State isn’t going to
win many shootouts, the team is tops in the league in scoring defense, as it
is permitting just 57.8 ppg to league foes.

Oregon State is allowing its Pac-10 brethren an average of 74.7 ppg, as shaky
defense has clearly played a major role in the team’s struggles. Marcel Jones
is the leading scorer for the Beavers with 15.1 ppg, and Sasa Cuic is the only
other double-digit scorer with his 12.4 ppg. In the victory over Washington two
nights ago, Josh Tarver led a balanced attack for OSU with 16 points, and he
also managed seven assists and four steals. Jones contributed 15 points for the
Beavers, who got 14 points from Wesley Washington. Jack McGillis added 11
points off the bench, and Cuic had nine points. The Beavers forced 21 turnovers
while committing just 10 of their own, the most obvious contributing factor in
the win.