After three straight road games and two consecutive losses, Stanford men’s basketball (15-4, 4-2 Pac-12) returns to the Farm to take on Oregon State (12-8, 2-6 Pac-12) on Thursday at 8 p.m. In a quick turnaround, the Card will then face No. 11 Oregon (17-4, 6-2 Pac-12), the conference’s highest-ranked team, on Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m.
The Cardinal opened conference play with four wins, including a 74-59 road victory over UCLA (10-10, 3-4 Pac-12) in Pauley Pavilion, en route to the top of the Pac-12 standings. Following the defeat of the Bruins, Stanford boasted the only undefeated record in league play; however, shooting struggles and turnovers made maintaining perfection impossible for the Card against USC (16-4, 5-2 Pac-12).
Despite leading the Trojans by as many as 21 points in the second half and by five with just 15 seconds left to play, Stanford handed over the ball twice in the last 13 seconds. USC converted the errors to points on both occasions, pushing the contest into overtime. Combined with the Cardinal’s 35% and 33% success rates from the field in the second half and overtime, the errors allowed the Trojans to capitalize on their comeback and down the Card 82-78.
Similar scoring challenges proved fatal for the Cardinal against Bay Area rival Cal (9-10, 3-3 Pac-12) on Sunday. Stanford shot an abysmal 12.5% (1-for-8) from behind the arc against the Golden Bears, far lower than the team’s 40% season average it boasted heading into the matchup. Overall, the team was successful on just 36% of attempts in the first half, significantly lower than its 48.9% average success rate over the season’s 18 previous games.
Despite the sad shooting stats, three Cardinal players — junior forward Oscar da Silva, junior guard Daejon Davis and freshman guard Tyrell Terry — tallied double-digit offensive performances with 13, 12 and 11 points, respectively. Terry, for whom Sunday’s contest was his 17th game of 10 or more points this season, and da Silva have consistently led the Cardinal in scoring, and they will likely be looked to in both of the week’s battles for their offensive strength. Heading into Thursday’s action, the duo averages a combined 31.6 points per game, with da Silva leading the team with 16 and Terry close on his heels with 15.6.
Just as dangerous on defense, the pair accounts for an average of 2.9 steals and 9.2 defensive boards per game. Against the Beavers, defense will be especially crucial, as the team needs to minimize the opportunities Oregon State’s Tres Tinkle has to score. Tinkle, who recently became the 16th player in the conference’s history to score 2,000 career points, averages 19.5 per game.
A chance to get back on track after two defeats, the Cardinal will tip off against the Beavers at 8 p.m. PST on Thursday.
Contact Savanna Stewart at savnstew ‘at’ stanford.edu.