OSU men's basketball: Beavers find hoop often in rout of Howard

2011-12-15T22:53:00Z 2011-12-16T09:06:06Z OSU men's basketball: Beavers find hoop often in rout of HowardBy KEVIN HAMPTON, Corvallis Gazette-Times Corvallis Gazette Times
December 15, 2011 10:53 pm  • 

Those following the Oregon State men's basketball team on Twitter got the news: Angus Brandt was first out on the Gill Coliseum court to warm up for Thursday night's game.

The extra court time paid off.

Brandt hit 9 of 11 shots and finished with a career-best 21 points to help the Beavers to a 93-72 win over Howard.

"He was the first person here for the shootaround earlier," OSU guard Ahmad Starks said. "I saw that tweet so I was like he must be ready to play."

Brandt got some help from Starks and Roberto Nelson.

Starks hit five 3-pointers and led OSU with 22 points. Nelson was 7 of 12 from the field with three 3s and finished with 20 points and led the Beavers with eight rebounds.

It was the first time coach Craig Robinson had three players with 20 or more points in one game.

"When you see Ahmad and Roberto, they're going to come out and show what they really can do," OSU guard Jared Cunningham said. "And the last two games they've both been stepping up and knocking down shots and I'm proud of them. We keep winning and they keep knocking down shots. That's all we need."

The Beavers (8-2) took another step in preparation for Pacific-12 Conference play with the win, which was more one-sided than the final indicates.

The Beavers led by 36 with 5:02 left in the game before the Bison whittled away against the OSU reserves.

OSU was again strong on the defensive end and that sparked the offense.

"Once we get a bit of a rhythm out there, then it's hard to stop us," Starks said. "So once we get a few plays, a few dunks, a few 3s or something like that, we just get on a run and that helps us big time."

Brandt showed his potential as a matchup nightmare for teams with an array of shots.

Robinson said Brandt and Kevin McShane are usually the first ones out to work on their shots.

"Every single shot (Brandt) took he worked on in the summer," Robinson said. "He had the righty jump hook, the lefty sky hook, drop-step and one-type shot, finishing dunk, 3-point shot, step-out midrange. Every one of those shots he worked on."

Cunningham had 10 points, six assists and one huge dunk in the first half.

Cunningham snagged an alley-oop pass from Joe Burton, twisted and threw down a reverse slam that had the crowd up and roaring.

Robinson said Cunningham has done that dunk at least four times in practice but didn't think he was going to try to pull it off in a game.

"I've never seen anybody who can catch the ball and then decide how to dunk it," Robinson said. "That's a lot of athleticism."

The Beavers are off to their best start since 1997.

"I feel we're right where we should be," Cunningham said. "Probably a little ahead of schedule. We put in the work and the effort in the offseason and it's showing right now."

Oregon St. 93, Howard 72

HOWARD (3-8) - Phillips 2-6 4-4 8, Leary 1-3 1-2 3, Andrews 3-13 3-4 11, Okoroh 4-8 5-5 13, Frazier 2-4 0-1 5, Lee 2-6 0-0 6, Dickerson 2-2 0-0 5, Cuffee 0-0 0-0 0, Bailey 1-1 1-2 3, Collins 1-5 1-2 3, Ford 5-9 2-2 13, Boyomo 0-1 0-0 0, Ellison 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 24-61 17-22 72.

OREGON ST. (8-2) - Burton 2-3 0-0 4, Collier 3-7 3-4 9, Brandt 9-11 2-4 21, Cunningham 2-8 6-8 10, Starks 6-12 5-5 22, McShane 2-2 2-2 6, Jones 0-0 0-0 0, Murphy 0-3 1-2 1, Moreland 0-0 0-2 0, Mitchell 0-1 0-0 0, Powers 0-1 0-0 0, Nelson 7-12 3-4 20. Totals 31-60 22-31 93.

Halftime-Oregon St. 49-30. 3-Point Goals-Howard 7-17 (Lee 2-2, Andrews 2-7, Dickerson 1-1, Ford 1-2, Frazier 1-2, Okoroh 0-1, Collins 0-2), Oregon St. 9-21 (Starks 5-6, Nelson 3-5, Brandt 1-2, Powers 0-1, Mitchell 0-1, Murphy 0-3, Cunningham 0-3). Fouled Out-None. Rebounds-Howard 38 (Phillips 8), Oregon St. 37 (Nelson 8). Assists-Howard 12 (Frazier 3), Oregon St. 22 (Cunningham 6). Total Fouls-Howard 25, Oregon St. 19. Technical-Boyomo. A-4,189.

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