During the first round of the 2020 Pac-12 Tournament, Oregon State guard Jarod Lucas hit a game-winning three-pointer to set up a rivalry matchup in the quarterfinals against the top-seeded Oregon Ducks.
That game never happened, however.
The rest of the Pac-12 Tournament was canceled due to the rapid spread of COVID-19 within the United States. Oregon and Oregon State had split the season series and the Beavers felt confident in their chances in a neutral court, win-or-go-home contest.
Instead, everyone went home. No sense of closure. Season done.
Fast forward one year to the date, and the Oregon State Beavers were back in the Pac-12 Tournament, one win away from a matchup with top-seeded Oregon in the next round.
Despite a 16-point first-half deficit, the Beavers prevailed over fourth-seeded UCLA to advance to the Pac-12 Tournament Semifinals for the first time since 2012. Oregon State became just the sixth team in conference tournament history to overcome a double-digit halftime deficit and win the game.
With the program's all-time leading scoerer Tres Tinkle gone, Oregon State was picked to finish last in the preseason media poll. UCLA was chosen to finish first. On the hardwood, the opposite happened.
Now one year later, Oregon and Oregon State will finally meet on the floor of T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
"It's going to be a good one," explained Lucas. "They're a really good program. Obviously, they won the league. They beat us a couple days ago.
Largely due to horrible early-season losses to teams such as the University of Portand and University of Wyoming, the Beavers are not in consideration to get an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament despite having wins over Oregon (No. 32 in the NET), USC (No. 15 in the NET), UCLA (No. 41 in the NET).
If the Beavers do not want its season to end this weekend, they need to win out, but Oregon State has found familiar territory as the underdog.
"We never stopped believing," explained head coach Wayne Tinkle following the comeback victory in the Pac-12 Tournament Quarterfinals.
That belief in themselves and each other will carry on through the remainder of their conference tournament journey.
Oregon and Oregon State tipoff on Pac-12 Network on Friday, March 12th at 5:30 p.m. PT.