No. 11 Stanford overcomes slow start to take down No. 7 Oregon State 61-44, looks ahead to facing Oregon Ducks Sunday
STANFORD, Calif. – No. 11 Stanford (19-3, 9-2) overcame a slow start to win convincingly 61-44 over No. 7 Oregon State (19-4, 9-2) Friday night at Maples Pavilion.
The Cardinal’s starters found themselves in a 6-0 hole during the first three minutes of play, contrasting with the start from their previous game versus California, when they began with a 10-0 advantage.
“We were taking good shots; we just missed a couple good shots.” Stanford head coach Tara VanDerveer explained about the scoring drought. “We were taking good shots; that is what was important.”
Stanford ran off eight points in a row to finally take the lead, and then eventually ended the first quarter on top, 12-8.
Oregon State head coach, Scott Rueck, had a different and humorous perspective of his squad’s impressive start.
“I thought we might shut them out.” Rueck joked. “I was pleased with that. I liked the way we defended early. We kept them off the boards during that stretch, as they were missing. The margin for error defensively went away, once we started missing.”
With no three pointers made in the first stanza, things heated up in the second quarter, especially for two Stanford players.
Sophomore guard Kiana Williams earned 12 of her team-high 18 points during the period, on 4-6 shooting beyond the 3-point arc.
“I was just being patient,” said Williams. “I practice those shots all the time, so when they go in, Tara [VanDerveer] is happy, so I have to make sure they are in the flow. My first few fell in; I started getting a rhythm.”
Cardinal freshman forward Lacie Hull, also joined the three-point party, as she dropped in two treys herself, including one at the midway point buzzer, scoring six of her nine points during Stanford’s best scoring segment. Stanford led 36-20 after 20 minutes of play.
The Cardinal led by as much as 23 points in the second half. The team was never really in danger of losing their longtime scoring advantage. The third quarter ended on another Lacie Hull three, this time seconds before the buzzer, 50-29.
Two other Cardinal women contributed greatly to the cause. Senior forward, Alanna Smith scored 17 points, grabbed seven rebounds, and blocked three shots. Sophomore forward, Maya Dodson snatched a career high 10 rebounds, and swatted away four scoring attempts, also a career high.
“We stepped up to the challenge of really playing defense,” VanDerveer said. “We had to focus on getting out on their shooters. The defense was outstanding.”
The Beavers were led by redshirt sophomore guard, Destiny Slocum and her game leading 23 points and eight rebounds, while junior guard Mikayla Pivec gathered 10 caroms.
The impressive win on the farm brings the Cardinal’s home record to 11-0 this season, providing a formidable home court advantage.
“I give credit to our fans; we feed off their energy,” Williams said. “We’re undefeated, and we want to keep that streak going into Sunday [versus Oregon].
Hull concurred with her teammate, and even as a freshman, understands the power of Maples:
“I think the crowd really gets our momentum going. Even if we’re not making our shots, as soon as we do, the entire shift of the game is because of them.”
Stanford will attempt to grant the wish of Williams to remain perfect at Maples Pavilion, as they host Oregon on Sunday, February 10, 2019. Oregon State travels across the Bay to take on the Cal Bears at Haas Pavilion on the same day.