Beavers' Late Rally Falls Short In 65-62 Loss To Alabama In New York
Nov. 15, 2012
NEW YORK, N.Y. - Oregon State rallied from a 15-point deficit to tie Alabama behind Devon Collier's game-high 21 points, but the Crimson Tide hit a three-pointer in the final seconds to win 65-62 in the semifinals of the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project Thursday night at Madison Square Garden.
Oregon State (2-1) will play Purdue (1-2) in the consolation game of the 2K Sports Classic at 2 p.m. PT (5 p.m. ET) at Madison Square Garden on Friday. The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU.
The Beavers trailed 52-37 with 12:35 to play but made a ferocious comeback to tie the score at 62 on a 25-10 run. Rodney Cooper hit a triple from the corner with 13 seconds left to give Alabama (3-0) a 65-62 lead, and after an Oregon State turnover and missed free throw by Cooper, Roberto Nelson missed a half-court heave at the buzzer.
"These guys typically do a good job but we just got started late," Oregon State head coach Craig Robinson said. "This was an opportunity lost but this might be a lesson for us that come the end of the season, we can say it's a good thing we got slapped in the face early on."
Collier, who was making his return to the New York area after growing up in The Bronx, had 21 points by going 6-for-12 from the field and 9-for-13 from the free throw line, including two under pressure to tie the game, 62-62. Angus Brandt had his first career double-double with 10 points and a career-high 11 rebounds, and Eric Moreland added six points and tied his career high with 14 boards.
"It was great to be back home especially because my family got to see me play in person," Collier said. "I wanted to win this game a lot because we don't have a chance to play on the East Coast too much, and my family is not used to seeing me in person so winning this game would have meant a lot. We just can't turn the ball over and have the slow start like we did in the beginning."
There were nine lead changes in the final 8:19 of the first half before Alabama took a 35-32 lead at the break. The Crimson Tide went on a 12-2 run to open the second half before taking what looked to be an insurmountable 15-point cushion.
The Beavers went 10 minutes without a turnover during their 25-10 run and made six consecutive free throws - two by Moreland and four from Collier - when they trailed 62-56 to tie the score. But Cooper hit the game-winner right in front of Alabama's bench for the final margin.
Oregon State finished with 20 turnovers, compared to only eight for Alabama, which helped the Crimson Tide take 12 more shots in the game.
"You can't give them 12 more possessions like we did and expect to win a game like this," Robinson said. "I'm going to take the blame for not getting us off to a good start. It just seemed like at the beginning of the game that we were in sand and we weren't flowing like we were capable of, like we showed in the second half."
Alabama, which advanced to the NCAA Tournament last season, got 20 points from Trevor Lacey, 14 from Trevor Releford and 12 from Cooper.
"I just want to give credit to Coach Grant's team," Robinson said. "I think they played a great game. They made shots when they needed to make shots, they handled our pressure and we didn't handle theirs. I think the extra possessions were the key. The way we play if we give opponents 12 more possessions and start off as slowly as we did, it's hard to play well."
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