Corvallis, OR -- This game started off with such high intensity as it was evident both teams were feeling some jitters with a Sweet 16 spot on the line. St. Bonaventure came in strong and aggressive giving the Beavers a run for their money. However, it wasn't long until the Beavers were able to shake the Bonnies and perform as planned.
"I thought we felt a little bit like the movie '300,'" said St. Bonaventure head coach Jim Crowley. "We were the Spartans, and we just ran out of people...and then we died. We fought like crazy and then it didn't go our way."
The Beavers' defense was unreal as they put a boatload of pressure on the Bonnies, not allowing a single shot to be taken forcing them to readjust their offensive tactics over and over again.
Ruth Hamblin protected the basket, grabbing defensive rebounds -- even with six hands flailing at her. St Bonaventure's leading scorer Katie Healy struggled as she only made one of eight shots, reflecting the Bonnie's low 19 percent shooting.
The teams were close -- at a gap of five -- going into the second quarter, until the Beavers' offense showed up and conquered.
Deven Hunter and Jamie Weisner rose to the occasion making bucket after bucket. Both grabbed seven points in the quarter, and with Hunter sinking it in from downtown, the crowd got on their feet to force a St. Bonaventure timeout. The Bonnies were on a fast decline as the Beavers widened the gap to 12 points.
From there on out, it was total Beaver domination.
Wiese and Weisner took to the floor and did what they do best, taking the Beavs on a 7-0 run in a little over a minute at the start of the third. It just did not stop there as Hanson and Siegner sank it in from downtown, blasting the Beavers up to a 24-point lead. With strong, steady scoring momentum and four three's in the quarter alone, Oregon State outscored St. Bonaventure BIG time - 21 to 4.
The Beavers maintained this hard-to-beat force throughout the remainder of the game, skyrocketing the gap to 30 points. As the starters made their exit off the floor, the crowd gave a loud and warm standing ovation, really showing the overwhelming support of Beaver Nation and the love they have for their team.
"I don't know if you find what we just came from anywhere. A fan base where it's almost like just this love affair between them and our team, and our team and them and it's just this special relationship that has developed over the last six years," said Oregon State head coach Scott Rueck.
"They've been with us every step of the way and today they came out in style on the biggest stage. Our team responded, and it was just a perfect sendoff for these seniors."
With the crowd on their feet and the clock running down to the final second, the Oregon State Beavers celebrated big as they secure their spot in the Sweet 16, defeating St. Bonaventure 69-40.
"This team has earned it through experience overcoming through resilience. They're just an incredible story, and they're great examples to everyone, and our fan base has learned that," said Rueck. "Now more people are getting to learn that. And I'm excited for them that they get to continue for all of us. They're an absolute dream to be around and [I'm] just very grateful that we get to keep going."
Weisner was the leading scorer in the night collecting 23 points and 4 rebounds followed by Hunter with 11 points, 5 rebounds, and Hamblin with 16 rebounds.
Drummond was the leading scorer for St Bonaventure with 12 points and 3 rebounds followed by Healy with 8 points 6 rebounds and Richmond with 6 points.