LAS VEGAS, Nev. – The Oregon State women’s basketball team shot nearly 50 percent from deep, making 13 3-pointers, and outscored Clemson by 39 points from behind the arc to rout the Tigers, 74-41, on the final day of the Duel in the Desert tournament in Las Vegas.
The Beavers (8-3) shot 42.6 percent overall (23-of-54) and even better from distance, knocking down 13-of-28 (46.4 percent). Oregon State, which had only made 12 3-pointers in a game three times in program history prior to this year, has already surpassed a dozen three times in the season’s first 11 games.
“When you move the ball the way they do and you have a couple of absolutely elite shooters, that’s a tough team to guard,” Oregon State head coach Scott Rueck said. “We are seeing the emergence of our inside game and getting better and better there, [but] when that 3-ball is going, that’s a dagger for the other team and such a lift for us.”
Oregon State, which makes nearly 40 percent of its 3-point attempts as a team, was led on the night by Jamie Weisner and Sydney Wiese, who each connected on four. Weisner tallied 17 total points while Wiese filled the stat sheet with 14 points, six rebounds and four assists. Ali Gibson and Alyssa Martin, both with over 100 career made 3-pointers to their name, each hit a pair and Gabriella Hanson rounded out the onslaught with her fifth of the season.
Successful weekend in Vegas. Saw a lot of growth in three games and happy this team was able to truly see how good they can be. #gobeavs
While the Beavers notched 39 of their 74 total points from behind the arc, Clemson (7-5) had trouble getting going, both from long range and at the rim. The Tigers shot just 28 percent overall (14-of-50) and missed all five of their 3-point attempts. It was the 21st time OSU has held its opponent below 30 percent shooting under Rueck. The Beavers are 19-2 in those games and now also 23-3 under their head coach when allowing less than 50 points.
“I couldn’t be prouder of this team and how they prepared today,” Rueck added. “They came out and executed, forced [Clemson] to its weaknesses and finally felt a defensive domination at a level that I have been begging for. I wanted this team to experience what they felt today and totally frustrate our opponent – making them play a type of basketball they don’t want to.”
Oregon State grabbed a stranglehold on the action with a 16-2 run midway through the first half. Leading by just one point, 9-8, at the 12:43 mark of the opening period, the Beavers pulled away over the next 3:28. Hanson started the spurt by hitting a pair of free throws and was immediately followed by a Weisner 3-pointer. Deven Hunter made a freebie before Wiese splashed another triple through the net, losing her defender on a crossover to create some space.
Wiese would make a layup on the next OSU possession, her only points not from behind the arc, and then Hunter, who went 6-of-7 from the line on the night, made another pair of free throws. Wiese capped the run with a baseline 3-pointer to give the Beavers a 25-10 lead with 8:08 left in the half and force a Clemson timeout.
The Tigers would never again be within single digits. They were down 18 at halftime and Ruth Hamblin extended the Beaver lead to 39-19 coming out of the break with a lay-in, Oregon State wouldn’t lead by less than 20 points the rest of the way.
Oregon State returns to action on Sunday, Dec. 29 when it hosts No. 4 Notre Dame in its first of 12 regular-season games televised on the Pac-12 Networks. That contest will start a three-game stretch against ranked teams. After playing the fourth-ranked Fighting Irish, OSU travels to the Bay Area for games at No. 21 California and No. 6 Stanford.
“It’s been circled for a while for a lot of people,” Rueck said of the Notre Dame game, which will mark the first time an ACC team has come to Gill. “That’s what we do this for. We want to be the best so let’s play against them. We have three elite teams we are going to be facing and three fun challenges as soon as we get back after the break. I thought we got better all three days this week and it was fun to watch the progression of this young team. We had so many reps in a row that we became really efficient today and have created some nice momentum.”