Instant Analysis: First half dominance leads Oregon State past Utah, 70-51

Instant Analysis: First half dominance leads Oregon State past Utah, 70-51

CORVALLIS, Oregon - Completely dominant from start to finish. The Oregon State Beavers got off to an electric start hitting 13-for-30 from the field in the first half and taking a 35-19 lead at halftime. Junior guard Ethan Thompson was key on both ends of the court, finishing with a double-double 13 points and 11 to lead the Beavs (15-9, 5-7 Pac-12) past the Utah Utes (14-10, 5-7 Pac-12) 70-51 in Gill Coliseum.

It was a critical win with six Pac-12 conference games left.

Here are three quick takeaways from the game:

1. FIRST HALF DOMINANCE

Oregon State held Utah to a season-low 19 points in the first half. A huge part of that defensive effort was putting pressure on Utah’s Timmy Allen, who leads the conference in free throw attempts, limiting Allen to two points in the first half (1-for-4 from the field).

The Beavs also forced nine first-half turnovers and got 11 points off those turnovers. 

2. REICHLE GETS HOT AGAIN

Coming off an 11-point performance against Oregon last weekend, Zach Reichle picked up where he left off. The junior guard from Wilsonville, Oregon finished with 10 points off 2-for-4 from three-point range.

3. ETHAN THOMPSON

Ethan Thompson continues to impress this season. The junior guard recorded his fourth career double-double with just over six minutes to go in the game. He had the defensive assignment on Oregon guard Payton Pritchard last weekend and continues to be a pest on the perimeter.

UP NEXT: The Beavs host the Colorado Buffaloes on Saturday, tip-off set for 7 p.m. (PT) at Gill Coliseum.

Mikayla Pivec honored as Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American

Mikayla Pivec honored as Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American

Mikayla Pivec's devotion to community service has been on display all season long. Now, the Oregon State women's basketball team captain is being honored for her contributions. 

Per a release from Oregon State Tuesday, Pivec was named Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American. 

She was chosen as one of five first-team honorees to receive the prestigious award, which honors student-athletes who make a positive impact as leaders in their community. 

While completing her honors thesis at Oregon State, Pivec focused on finding efficient ways for homeless people to get access to more resources. She was awarded a $5,000 grant for her work, in which she donated $1,000 to local shelters. 

Pivec is also the co-founder of the Beavers CARE, a group that brings Oregon State student-athletes together for service initiatives, such as trips to the Domincan Republic with Beavers without Borders. She has also volunteered with IMPACT for Life, Community Outreach Incorporated, the Corvallis Women's Shelter and DAM Worth It. 

Pivec was also one of six Beavers named to the Pac-12 Winter Academic Honor Roll on Tuesday. 

She joins Taya Corosdale, Aleah Goodman, Patricia Morris, Destiny Slocum and Janessa Thropay as Oregon State women's basketball student-athletes recognized for their work in the classroom. 

Five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder commits to Oregon State women's hoops

Five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder commits to Oregon State women's hoops

Oregon State women’s basketball just got a lot stronger in 2021 with the commitment of five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder.

The 6-foot guard from Naperville, Illinois, is the No. 12 rated high school prospect according to ESPN in the 2021 class.

ESPNW had the following evaluation of Kampschroeder from Nike Nationals in July 2019:

Skilled guard with versatility, size in the back court; playmaker with unselfish persona, executes in half-court game; manufactures shots, delivers off the dribble and finishes plays in traffic; basketball IQ, knocks down shots to the arc; competes on both ends of the floor; an elite prospect in the class of 2021.

Kampschroeder led the Naperville North Huskies in every major statistical category, averaging 17.2 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.4 steals, and ended her junior season as the DuPage Valley conference champions and a regional title (the school’s first since 2005), according to an article in the Naperville Sun.

Kampschroeder also considered Stanford and Iowa at the next level.

The Beavs will have to wait one more season to see Kampschroeder in black and orange in Corvallis, but she will be a great fit alongside last season’s freshmen sensations Taylor Jones and Kennedy Brown.

The Beavs’ 2020 recruiting class consists of: five-star guard Sasha Goforth (Fayetteville High School, Arkansas); and three-star guard Savannah Samuel (St. Francis High School, Georgia).

Former Oregon State star Sydney Wiese reveals she has COVID-19

Former Oregon State star Sydney Wiese reveals she has COVID-19

Just days after Sydney Wiese shared that she was in Spain when President Trump announced a travel ban from many European countries, the former Oregon State women’s basketball star has tested positive for the coronavirus.

She opened up about her diagnosis on social media Friday. A previous Twitter post revealed she had been tested for the virus on or around March 16. 

“I tested positive for COVID-19,” Wiese said in a post on Twitter. “I am feeling well- fortunate to only show mild symptoms, but I am capable of spreading it. All of us are united in our fight to stop this spread and keep everyone safe/healthy. I will do my part, and I hope you do too.”

Wiese said she is currently exhibiting symptoms such as loss of taste and smell. 

Well-wishes poured in from her Beavers family. 

On a recent episode of the Talkin’ Beavers podcast, Wiese told Beavers Insider Ron Callan she was overseas playing for AE Sedis Bàsquet when she found out she would have to travel back to the U.S. immediately. An agreement between her and the team allowed her to leave prematurely due to the international uncertainty.

"I woke up randomly in the middle of the night to text messages and updates because that's when President Trump placed the travel ban that was going to go into effect in 48 hours,” Wiese recalled. “This came a couple of hours after our league decided to postpone.

"It hurt my heart because I loved the team I was with, I loved my coaches, I loved Spain."

Wiese is expected to take the court for her fourth season with the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks. In 2019, she averaged 4.8 points,1.8 assists and 1.3 rebounds in 32 appearances. 

The LA Sparks released a statement following Wiese's announcement.

Los Angeles Sparks guard Sydney Wiese tested positive for the coronavirus after returning from playing overseas in Spain. She’s been in self-isolation at home in Phoenix since her return and is encouraging everyone to practice social distancing to help prevent the spread of the virus. The Sparks are in direct communication with Sydney and wish her a speedy recovery.

In her four-year career at Oregon State, Wiese was a three-time All-Pac-12 selection and set a conference record of 373 three-pointers. She helped lead Oregon State to the NCAA Tournament all four years, including two second-round appearances, a Sweet 16 and the women’s Final Four in 2016.

Listen to the full Talkin’ Beavers Podcast below to hear more from Wiese on her experience in Spain.

Wayne Tinkle in favor of extra eligibility for seniors affected by COVID-19

Wayne Tinkle in favor of extra eligibility for seniors affected by COVID-19

Nearly every industry has been affected by the coronavirus, including NCAA athletics that canceled all winter and spring sports championships in attempt to minimize the spread of the virus. 

This includes college basketball and the Oregon State Beavers, who were ready to play in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 Tournament before being told the tournament and the rest of the college basketball season was canceled.

"When we broke the news to them, you can imagine the news just from the high that we were on, you know the day before (coming off a game-winning three-pointer to defeat Utah in the Pac-12 Tournament), the excitement we had for what was next. We knew our postseason implications were sitting pretty good after the Utah win, you know, and from there who knows?" said head coach Wayne Tinkle on the latest Talkin' Beavers Podcast.

Tinkle later talked to host Nigel Burton about whether he'd support the NCAA granting additional eligibility for athletes affected by the cancellation of NCAA Championship events in wake of COVID-19. 

Well what we're hearing is that..it could be too tough of a decision, just too much that goes into it. You know, you're talking about extra scholarships and that obviously means money... I see both sides...Life rarely gives you do-overs and we got through a big part of our season, right? Now, that being said there's no experience like postseason play and that college window is so small... you really want these student athletes to enjoy the most and have the best experience...the reality is life's not fair. - Wayne Tinkle

The NCAA is already looking into granting extra eligibility to spring sports athletes who barely got to play their respective seasons, but are more up in the air about winter sports athletes.

Tinkle says if it were up to him he'd want to give seniors the option to come back, although there may be some logistical problems.

I'm all for these seniors that didn't get a chance to go out the way they wanted to, in the spring sports especially, to have another year of eligibility but man it's going to bring up a lot of issues with scholarships and where that money comes from. - Wayne Tinkle

However, despite the logistical issues, he'd support it for winter sports athletes too because they missed out on invaluable postseason experience: "if somebody called me and asked for my vote, I'd support it just because of [the missed postseason] because you want to give these folks the best experience that they can have in their time here at the collegetic level."

The Beavers head coach added that if his son, Tres Tinkle, had the chance to come back he doesn't think he would because it'd be his sixth year, he already has his degree, and "he's ready for the next phase." Tres became the all-time leading scorer in Oregon State history last season. 

Oregon State women's basketball star Mikayla Pivec said if she was offered an additional year of eligibility she'd take it "in a heartbeat." 

There has not been an official word yet on whether senior winter sports athletes will be granted an additional year.

You can listen to the Talkin' Beavers podcast here.

Oregon State AD Scott Barnes says rug got pulled out from under student athletes

Oregon State AD Scott Barnes says rug got pulled out from under student athletes

The 2019-2020 winter sports season will forever be remembered as the “what could have been” season, which came to an abrupt halt in early March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Oregon State men’s basketball team was gaining momentum in the Pac-12 Tournament with freshman Jarod Lucas sinking a game-winning three-point shot with 1.8 left on the clock from the corner to defeat Utah in round one of the conference tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada. Yes, it would be difficult to win four games in four days and claim the Pac-12 Tournament title in a challenging conference, but a trip to the NIT Tournament in March was a likely spot for head coach Wayne Tinkle and the Beavs. 

The No. 13 ranked women’s team was preparing to host round one of the NCAA March Madness Tournament in front of the Corvallis faithful in Gill Coliseum for what seems like a popular destination for the first round of March Madness with head coach Scott Rueck at the helm.

That all unfortunately changed very quickly.

Oregon State Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes joined hosts Mike Parker and Jon Warren on the Beaver Sports Podcast on Wednesday:

Of course our heart goes out to out student-athletes, but the rug got pulled out from under them. Both those programs to your point were on a roll. We were so looking forward to seeing how that would play out for both those programs. And so it was fun to see them end on a high note. — Scott Barnes

You can listen to the full podcast here.

Former Oregon State Beaver Brandin Cooks donates $50K to fight COVID-19

Former Oregon State Beaver Brandin Cooks donates $50K to fight COVID-19

Oregon State's second-ever Biletnikoff Award winner continues to make an impact on the field, but now he's making an impact off the field. 

Former Beavers and current Los Angeles Rams receiver Brandin Cooks has announced a donation of $50,000 to his hometown of Stockton, CA, to establish the Stockton Children's Fund.

According to Lindsey Thiry of ESPN, "the money will help serve local kids who have been impacted by the effects of the coronavirus - helping to fund food and childcare, among other needs."

The 26-year-old was drafted No.20 overall by the New Orleans Saints in the 2014 NFL Draft. He signed a four-year contract with the Saints before being traded to the New England Patriots in 2017. Cooks helped the Patriots get to the Super Bowl in 2018, where they lost to the Philadelphia Eagles. The following offseason the Los Angeles Rams acquired Cooks and a 2018 fourth-round draft pick for 2018 first and sixth-round draft picks.

Coming off a Super Bowl appearance and heading into 2019, Cooks, along with Larry Fitzgerald and Antonio Brown were the only receivers to record 1,000+ yards and five-plus receiving touchdowns in each of the prior three seasons. However, in 2019, his production fell to 42 catches for 583 yards and two touchdowns in 14 games. The Rams have reportedly been open to trading the wideout. 

[RELATED: Former Oregon State WR Brandin Cooks up for trade in Los Angeles]

At Oregon State, Cooks was one of the best players in school history ultimately winning the program's second Biletnikoff Award his junior season when he recorded 1,730 yards receiving and 16 touchdowns. 

Mikayla Pivec named Honorable Mention for USBWA All-American

Mikayla Pivec named Honorable Mention for USBWA All-American

Mikayla Pivec continues to rack up post season awards she has definitely earned.

On Monday, it was announced that Pivec has been named an Honorable Mention for the USBWA All-American team:

Along with Pivec, other Honorable Mentions include: Bella Alarie, Princeton; Brittany Brewer, Texas Tech; Te'a Cooper, Baylor; Crystal Dangerfield, UConn; Mia Davis, Temple; Rennia Davis, Tennessee; Kiah Gillespie, Florida State; Arella Guirantes, Rutgers; Ashley Joens, Iowa State; Stella Johnson, Rider; Lindsay Pulliam, Northwestern; Chante Stonewall, DePaul; Kianna Williams, Stanford.

The 5-foot-10 Oregon State senior guard's season ended too soon. Despite the NCAA Tournament cancellation, Pivec's four-year run at Oregon State will go down in the history books. She capped off her career in orange and black averaging 14.9 points and 9.3 rebounds. Her rebounding stats were second in the Pac-12 Conference.

In her final game with the Beavs, Pivec became Oregon State's all-time leader in rebounding (1,028+).

We are going to miss the Pac-12 All-Defense, All-Pac-12 and now U.S. Basketball Writers Association Honorable Mention player who has done so much for the Corvallis community both on an off the court.

Congratulations, Mikayla!

A message to Oregon State WBB & fans after NCAA tournament cancellation

A message to Oregon State WBB & fans after NCAA tournament cancellation

I have been dreading this weekend!

Normally, I would be heading to Corvallis to broadcast the Oregon State Women's basketball team in the First and Second rounds of the NCAA Tournament. You see, the Beavs are ranked No. 14 in the final Associated Press poll and that would pretty much guarantee them hosting the first two rounds. Gill Coliseum would once again play host to some intense basketball. Scott Rueck would have his team well-prepared for the style of play of their opponent. Would it be Boise State for a second straight year? Would Troy cross the country to play the likes of Mikalya Pivec and Kat Tudor? Both are seniors who would be getting bonus games at Gill where they entertained and impressed Beaver Nation for four years.

Instead, here we sit semi-quarantined. The women's hoops world is on hold. All sports have been relegated to reruns and a lot of COVID-19 chat on the local sports radio talk shows. NFL free-agency is getting a lot of play of course. You can find some talk about college hoops but it’s mainly about all of the spring sports that have been cancelled. The impact of no College World Series on the city of Omaha was the big headline earlier this week.

I have been relegated to taking long walks with Sagan my dog. 

He actually has his own twitter page (@Sagan34) and has kept me sane through this coronavirus mess. It is a mess that might be the weirdest thing I have dealt with in my life. I can't see my two incredible grandkids (ages 4 and 2 and a half) because my daughter wants to protect me from any potential contact with the virus since I am a little older than some. I have been helping a good friend at a local brewery involved in the canning process for some impressive IPA's. But what I miss most is broadcasting games on the Beaver Sports Network. That is over now for the foreseeable future. Yah, its depressing. Netflix and HBO now shows can only go so far.

Then my attitude was improved a bit by this video. If you love women's college basketball thank Katie Mavis and the Oregon State Athletics department for cheering up all of us:

Now, if you are really into some intense basketball and are willing to watch an entire game check out the Sweet 16 game between Oregon State and Baylor in Lexington, Kentucky in 2018.

The first time the Beavers ever played inside Rupp Arena. The Baylor Bears had revenge on their minds because the Beavs had beaten them in the 2016 Elite Eight game in Dallas to head to the Final Four. This is one great college basketball game that can take your mind off the latest shelter in place edict put out by your local politician.

Hopefully, this crisis will pass sooner than later. We can get back to the things we all love the best. A baseball game in Seattle or Hillsboro or Keizer. Yah, the In n Out lines will be back but so what. We can look forward to Jonathan Smith's third year as Oregon State head football coach and the possibility of a bowl game. We will wait to see what happens to the potential eligibility of the women's basketball players denied their swan song in the NCAA Tourney. 

Yes, this is a tough weekend for what could have been. I guess you can't wallow in it and be positive. The crisis will pass. The long-term impact is unknown so... walk the dog… enjoy cooking and that great Coasters IPA and hope that things will return to normal sooner than later.

Former Oregon State QB Sean Mannion re-signs with Minnesota Vikings

Former Oregon State QB Sean Mannion re-signs with Minnesota Vikings

Sean Mannion will return as the Minnesota Vikings backup quarterback. 

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Thursday that Mannion has re-signed with the Vikings for his sixth NFL season. 

The Vikings rested their starters in the 2019 regular-season finale against Chicago, paving way for Mannion to get the start. In the 21-19 loss, he completed 12 of 21 passes for 126 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. 

Mannion, a third-round pick out of Oregon State, played four seasons with the Los Angeles Rams before joining the Vikings as a free agent last year. In St.Louis/Los Angeles, Mannion appeared in 10 games with one start. He completed 45 of 74 passes for 384 yards and three interceptions with a career passer rating of 57.5. 

With the Beavers, Mannion broke a number of school records, including career passing yards (13,600), completions (1,187), attempts (1,838), completion percentage (64.6) and touchdowns (83).

Mannion, 28, will return to a quarterbacks room that includes recently-extended starter Kirk Cousins and second-year player Jake Browning.