Women’s basketball: Oregon State earns Team of the Week honors

Three straight wins over ranked conference opponents have made Oregon State the team to beat in the Pac-12 Conference and propelled the Beavers to NCAA.com Team of the Week honors.

Highlighting the week for Oregon State, 15-1 and 4-0, was the programs first-ever road win over Stanford at Maples Pavilion, a 72-69 win in double overtime on Sunday evening over the No. 10 Cardinal. The Cardinal overcame late deficits in the fourth quarter and overtime to force extra periods, but the Beavers made a number of big plays down the stretch to extend their winning streak to 12-straight games. Oregon State’s first road win against Stanford came in the team’s 30th away game vs. the Cardinal.

Senior Sydney Wiese hit a number of big shots on the evening, including a 3-pointer in double-overtime to give the Beavers a six-point lead. The Phoenix, Ariz. native finished with 26 points and five rebounds, hitting five 3-pointers in the contest. Freshman Mikayla Pivec tallied 13 points, including an important reverse layup in the second overtime period. Oregon State held Stanford to 32.9 percent shooting in the contest. The loss was just Stanford’s ninth at home in the last 10 years.

The Beavers had started the weekend by scoring a 66-56 win over No. 20 California on January 6 in Berkeley, Calif. Oregon State used a 12-0 run spanning the second and third quarters to take control of the game, and outscored Cal 16-8 in the third frame. Pivec filled the stat sheet, scoring a career-high 19 points on 8-for-13 shooting from the floor. The Lynnwood, Wash. native also tallied five rebounds and four assists. Redshirt-junior Breanna Brown matched a career-high with 14 points on 7-for-10 shooting from the floor, while Wiese scored 10 points and dished out four assists. Marie Gulich went for nine points and eight rebounds, while Gabriella Hanson finished with eight points. Senior Kolbie Orum set a career-high with 10 rebounds.

A Women’s Final Four participant for the first time in 2016, Oregon State rang in the New Year by defeating No. 9 Washington 73-70 at home on Jan. 1. Oregon State used a 17-0 second-quarter run to explode to a first-half lead, and clamped down defensively to hold Washington without a field goal for a 12-minute stretch, spanning the second and third quarters. The Beavers led by as many as 27 in the game, and never trailed in the contest. Wiese posted another outstanding performance, scoring 26 points on 9-for-16 shooting. The guard also tallied six assists and four rebounds. Orum went 6-for-8 from the floor on her way to 12 points and seven boards, while Hanson pulled down eight rebounds, and played outstanding defense, helping the Beavers limit Husky standout Kelsey Plum to 8-for-23 shooting from the floor.

One of the top players in the country, Wiese leads Oregon State, averaging 16.3 points per game on 48.3 percent shooting from the field. She has connected on 44 of 93 (47.3%) of her 3-point field goal attempts.

Having climbed to No. 10 in The Associated Press’ latest women’s college basketball poll, the Beavers will be back in California this week, when they head south for matchups with the two Los Angeles schools. The trip will begin Friday, when Oregon State takes on UCLA at Pauley Pavilion, followed by a Jan. 15 matchup at USC.

Honorable mention teams of the week: Baylor, Charlotte, DePaul, Drake, Elon, Florida State, Fordham, LSU, New Mexico, Quinnipiac, St. Louis, Texas, UC Davis and Virginia Tech.