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Preview: Stanford and Oregon State can challenge Oregon, but first they must go through each other

The PAC-12’s current second- and third-place teams will face off before each team gets their shot at conference leader Oregon. 

Alanna Smith will look to lead the Cardinal to a win against Oregon State.
Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Stanford (18-3) has beaten some of the country’s best over the course of the season, including current No. 1 Baylor. But recent losses have put a slight dent in their quest to lead the PAC-12 and secure a top seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Oregon State (19-3) has one loss in their last 12 games. The Beavers will need to focus on Stanford, but they also face first-place Oregon twice next week in a three-day span.

For Stanford, the offense goes through Alanna Smith — the third-best scorer in the PAC-12, with 20.9 points per contest. She can sure shoot the ball, 53% from the field and 45% from beyond the arc. The senior forward has scored over 20 points an impressive 10 times this season.

For Oregon State, they bring the two-pronged attack of Destiny Slocum and Mikayla Pivec. The two have led their team in scoring a combined 17 times, Slocum (11) and Pivec (6). Watch out for sophomore Aleah Goodman, also, who is sixth in the nation in three-point shooting percentage (47.2%) and has averaged 11 points in conference play, despite coming off of the bench.

Stanford is 10-0 at home while Oregon State has not lost a game on the road. The Cardinal will have their hands full with the nation’s best three-point shooting offense. But Stanford bounced back after a buzzer-beater loss to California and will look to get their season back on track.

This game has big implications in the PAC-12 race and potentially NCAA Tournament seeding as well. It is definitely one to watch.

Game information

No. 7 Oregon State Beavers (19-3, 9-1) at No. 11 Stanford Cardinal (18-3, 8-2)

When: Friday, Feb 8, at 9:00 p.m. ET

Where: Stanford Maples Pavilion, Stanford, CA

How to watch: PAC-12 Network