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ASU Basketball: Sun Devils run past Oregon State 73-55

Arizona State got back to its winning ways on Wednesday in Tempe.

Senior Shaquille McKissic Led Arizona State With 17 Points On Wednesday
Senior Shaquille McKissic Led Arizona State With 17 Points On Wednesday
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona State jumped out to an early lead and never looked back on Wednesday night against Oregon State, finding their offensive stride and dominating the Beavers, 73-55. After falling behind 7-3 in the first couple of minutes, the Sun Devils began to shoot the lights out. Four players ended up scoring in double figures by the time the night was done.

A volcano of offensive momentum that has been building throughout the past couple of weeks exploded in the first half against Oregon State. A 27-9 run for the maroon and gold put them ahead 30-16, and ASU dominated throughout.

A barrage of three-pointers gave the Sun Devils the separation needed for another easy, no-stress victory like the one six days ago in Berkeley.

They were held without a field goal for the final three-plus minutes of the first half, but a strong effort on defense gave them 40-23 lead heading into the locker room. The second half started with more of the same.

ASU's hot shooting continued and the Beavers fell behind by 21 after a dunk and three-pointer forced a Wayne Tinkle timeout. OSU did score on its next two possessions, but at that point the Beavers needed scores and stops. Coming by stops was the tough part.

Needing points, and fast, OSU tried to push the tempo midway through the second half. That played right into the hands of the Sun Devils, who were more than willing to trade buckets when up by 20.

The Beavers tried going to a full court trap at the nine minute mark, and while they were able to get a few turnovers out of it, coach Herb Sendek quickly resolved the situation by inserting center Eric Jacobsen back into the game.

There was no stopping getting the ball to the big man, and with that, there was no more doubt in the outcome. It was just the second time this season that Oregon State has given up more than 56 points in a Pac-12 game.

ASU is now 11-10, 3-5 in the Pac-12 following its victory. The Beavers dropped to 14-6, 5-3 in league play. Next up for the Sun Devils is a visit from Oregon on Friday night at Wells Fargo Arena. The Ducks were throttled tonight down in Tucson against Arizona in a 90-56 defeat.

Senior Shaquille McKissic led the Sun Devils with 17 points, but Oregon State's Gary Payton II topped all scorers with 23. The Beavers two other main scoring options, Olaf Schaftenaar and Langston Morris-Walker, were locked down by a stingy ASU defense, making a concerted effort to limit their three-point attempts by switching on all screens. The maroon and gold would end up with 15 more three-point shots on the night.

"We had too many guys that had off nights," OSU coach Wayne Tinkle said. "But you can't have off nights offensively and carry it over to defense."

Arizona State got a huge night from freshman point guard Tra Holder, who played 31 points after it was learned Kodi Justice is out for the season with a broken foot. Holder ran the offense with precision and dropped 10 points in the process.

His play, grouped with the team's increased shot-making ability, have the Sun Devils rising quickly in the Pac-12 standings.

"We have gotten better this month," ASU head coach Herb Sendek said. "We are improving as a team. This is what we expected."

They will attempt to climb even higher in Friday's game against Oregon. Tipoff is slated for 6:00 PM MT on the Pac-12 Networks.