Behind 24 points from Remy Martin, the Arizona State Sun Devils (10-5, 1-1 Pac-12) beat PAC-12 foe, Oregon State (11-4, 1-2) 82-76 in Corvallis on Thursday. The Sun Devils were the first road team to get a win in the tough environment that is Gill Coliseum this season.
The six-point victory was a much needed boost for the Sun Devils after an embarrassing 28-point loss to The University of Arizona on Saturday.
ASU head coach Bobby Hurley had the team practice without jersey’s this entire week because he felt that the players hadn’t earned the right to wear “ASU” following the porous loss to Arizona.
In the first half on Thursday, ASU came out with a renewed intensity and focus. They put together a strong half that culminated in a 14-3 ASU run.
The Sun Devils relied upon stifling defense and strong play in the paint to build a 36-25 halftime lead. ASU forced nine first-half turnovers and held OSU to a 34.8 first-half shooting percentage.
The inside presence the Sun Devils possessed during the half set the tone for the game. It also assisted in opening up space for the three-ball in the second half.
OSU deployed its highly effective 1-3-1 zone periodically in the second half but to little avail.
Five of the Sun Devils eight three-pointers came in the second frame, which helped match the Beavers increased second-half offensive output. Both teams shot above 50 percent from the field during the half.
Down the stretch, ASU kept their lead in double digits for the majority of the half and was able to stave off a late OSU rally that was ignited by a four-point play by Tres Tinkle.
Martin scored 20 plus points for the third consecutive game and was nearly impossible to guard all night long. He played a team-high 38 minutes.
Junior forward Kimani Lawrence earned the start and had another solid outing after a rough beginning of the season. He finished with nine points and five rebounds.
Another struggling Sun Devil who showed out was Rob Edwards. The senior shot 4-5 from three and finished with 18 points, four rebounds, and two assists. Edwards’s offensive success is crucial to ASU and has been one of the missing pieces this season. Thursday was a step back in the right direction.
The victory showcased ASU’s talent and potential. It was one of their most complete games of the season, and a solid first conference win of the season. However, ASU will need to find a way to consistently perform at that level week in and week out if they hope to return to the NCAA Tournament for the third consecutive year.