Oregon State continues its pursuit of just its second winning season in Pacific-12 Conference men's basketball play in more than three decades when the Beavers face the Stanford Cardinal on Saturday afternoon in Stanford, Calif.
Oregon State (12-11, 8-9) needs to win its remaining three games to join the school's 2019 edition (10-8) as the only Beavers teams to play better than .500 ball in conference play since Gary Payton led the 1990 squad to the conference championship.
After four losses in five games put that quest in jeopardy, the Beavers held off California for a 59-57 road win on Thursday. Roman Silva's career-high 15 points paced the visitors.
It was the Beavers' first victory at Cal since 2009, marking their first sweep of the Bears since that season. This on a night in which they failed to make a 3-pointer (0-for-10).
It was all about interior scoring and a strong rebounding effort by Warith Alatishe (11 of the Beavers' 25 boards), coach Wayne Tinkle boasted afterward.
"Shots weren't going in," he observed, "but the perimeter (defense) and Warith on the glass got us back. And our focus to finish at the rim in the second half when the 3s weren't going in."
Oregon State will be attempting to avenge an 81-71 home loss to Stanford (14-10, 10-8) back on Jan. 4. Oscar da Silva torched the Beavers for 31 points in that one.
The Pac-12's second-leading scorer who averages 18.8 points a game didn't play in Thursday's 71-68 home loss to Oregon because of foot injury.
The absence was unexpected by da Silva's teammates, who had seen him at practice the day before. But that's when the injury occurred, according to coach Jerod Haase.
"It was a surprise to us," Jaiden Delaire said after he'd led the Cardinal with 15 points against the Ducks. "Oscar comes into work every single day, gives it everything he has. It's really hard when we see him out."
Delaire complemented da Silva with 19 points and nine rebounds in the January win at Oregon State.
Haase has given no indication whether his star will be available Saturday.
Freshman Ziaire Williams took on a bigger role in da Silva's absence against Oregon. He had 12 points in 24 minutes off the bench before missing a potential game-tying 3-pointer just before the final horn.
--Field Level Media