Monday, February 26, 2024
HomeSportOregon State's Jordan Pope hits game-winner to shock No. 9 Arizona

Oregon State’s Jordan Pope hits game-winner to shock No. 9 Arizona

No. 9 Arizona men’s basketball suffered an 83-80 upset loss to Oregon State after Beavers guard Jordan Pope hit a step-back triple at the buzzer Thursday night at Gill Coliseum.

Students rushed the floor to celebrate Oregon State’s (10-9, 2-6) first top-10 victory since 2014-15, snapping a 15-game losing streak in such games. Pope set a career high 31 points on 9-for-15 shooting.

Arizona (14-5, 5-3) is 4-5 in games away from McKale Center this season, including on neutral sites.

The Beavers led Thursday’s game for only five minutes, using a flurry of 3s in the second half to come back and build a nine-point lead with 2:27 remaining. The Wildcats used a 6-0 run to climb back in, but Pope made all three free throws after getting fouled by Keshad Johnson beyond the arc with one second on the shot clock.

Arizona fought back with a pair of buckets at the rim over the following 22 seconds to cut the deficit to 80-78 at 52 seconds remaining.

Johnson got up to block a 3-point attempt on the other end and stole the following inbounds pass, leading to Pelle Larsson drawing a foul and tying the game at the stripe with 11 ticks left. Pope was guarded by KJ Lewis on the final possession and created enough separation to nail the game-winner. Oregon State shot 8-for-12 from deep in the second half, while Arizona hit 1-of-9 triples in the same stretch.

Pope and Tyler Bilodeau combined for 34 points in the second half and 53 overall, hitting 8-of-12 3-pointers between them. Caleb Love led Arizona with 23 points on 6-for-12 shooting and Johnson added 18 points.

Arizona jumped ahead 16-7 over the first five minutes of the game and kept the Beavers at arm’s length the rest of the first half, leading by as many as 12 and going into the break up 44-36. But Oregon State made up the difference on a 13-4 run in the second half to tie the game at 58.

Bilodeau hit a go-ahead triple, 64-62, OSU’s first lead since the opening two minutes.

The Wildcats travel to Eugene to face first-place Oregon (14-5, 6-2) on Saturday. The Ducks defeated the Arizona State Sun Devils 80-61 on Thursday to grab sole possession of the top spot in the conference.

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