With the clock winding down in double overtime, Oregon State’s Stephen Thompson Jr., raised up over David Crisp, drained a three-pointer with 0.1 seconds left to hand Washington a 97-94 defeat.
CORVALLIS, Ore. — A week after toppling then-No. 9 Arizona with a three-pointer at the buzzer, the Huskies found themselves on the other end of similar late-game heroics on a wild Saturday night.
With the clock winding down in double overtime, Oregon State’s Stephen Thompson Jr. rose over David Crisp and drained a three-pointer with 0.1 seconds left to hand the Washington men’s basketball team a heartbreaking 97-94 defeat.
Two years ago, the Beavers’ junior guard sank a similar shot from nearly the exact spot on the Gill Coliseum floor to beat UW 82-81.
“It hurts,” said junior Noah Dickerson, who is 0-2 in Corvallis, Ore. “This is a hard place to play. … He made a great shot.”
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Oregon State’s last-second victory over Washington in 2016 ended in a bit of controversy as UW coaches, players and fans believed Thompson should have been called for traveling on the play before he released the shot.
This time, there was no disputing the result.
After UW’s Dominic Green knotted the score at 94-94 with 10.1 seconds left in the second overtime, OSU coach Wayne Tinkle decided against calling a timeout and let Thompson take over.
The 6-foot-4 junior guard drove inside the arc, but was cut off by Crisp. Thompson then circled back behind the arc and released a 21-foot jumper over Crisp’s outstretched arm that fell perfectly through the net.
“Everybody told me that was the shot that they made,” UW coach Mike Hopkins said. “I saw it on tape (from) a couple of years ago. Stevie is a great player. Great players want to take the big shot. And he teed it up and made it. It was a tough shot. I was more disappointed in the shots before.”
Surprisingly, a game between the stingiest defenses in the Pac-12 produced an entertaining shootout filled with a handful of high-flying dunks from the Huskies (17-8, 7-5 Pac-12) and a bevy of long-range three-pointers from the Beavers (13-11, 5-7).
After scoring just 40 points in Thursday’s defeat at Oregon, Washington couldn’t blame this setback on an offense that’s sometimes anemic.
The Huskies received 28 points from Dickerson and Jaylen Nowell chipped in 23. In all, five UW players scored in double figures in the Huskies’ second highest-scoring game of the season.
However, UW’s normally dependable defense disappeared in the second half when OSU scored 50 points.
“In the second half, we just didn’t defend the three-point line and that’s what we do,” Hopkins said. “We let Thompson get hot. And when those guys get hot, they start getting confident and you see what happens. They make the big one.”
Oregon State converted just 1 of 7 three-pointers in the first half when Washington led 36-30 at the break.
However, the Beavers got hot from long range in the second half and extra periods when they made 8 of 12 three-point attempts.
Washington countered the long-ball barrage with several jaw-dropping dunks, including a windmill, reverse two-hand jam from freshman guard Nahziah Carter, who finished with three slams and 10 points.
Crisp, who had 11 points, seven assists and played all 50 minutes, sank a three-pointer that put the Huskies up 13 points (67-54) and gave them their largest lead 8:24 left in the second half.
However, Washington was outscored 26-13 the rest of the way in regulation largely because of its porous perimeter defense. UW also couldn’t get the ball inside to Dickerson and committed 19 turnovers, which led to 25 points for OSU.
“We started trying to make plays by ourselves too many times,” Hopkins said. “Rather than the ball movement that was good for a lot of the time. … It’s a simple game. We missed some shots.”
No one could have expected the offensive fireworks in the second half because Oregon State entered Saturday’s game ranked first in the Pac-12 allowing just 67.7 points per game in league games and Washington was second at 67.9.
The Huskies must have felt as if they were staring in a mirror and playing against a reflection of themselves. Oregon State also relies on a suffocating 2-3 defense and they did everything UW did, only a little bit better.
Washington routinely gave up the mid-range jumpers in the paint to junior forward Tres Tinkle, who finished with 29 points and 11 rebounds. And when Tinkle wasn’t scoring, many of his eight assists went inside to junior forward Drew Eubanks (18 points and 13 rebounds).
Meanwhile, the Beavers’ zone compressed the middle while surrendering three-pointers in the corners. Matisse Thybulle drained 4 of 6 behind the arc for 15 points and Nowell had sank 3 of 5 from downtown.
“I thought we played hard,” Hopkins said. “We just didn’t play smart.”
Both teams had a chance to win in regulation, but Nowell and Thompson missed potential game-winners in the last minute.
In the first overtime twice fell behind by four points and scrambled to recover thanks to Dickerson who scored five of their 7 points in the period.
Once again Thompson had a chance to end the game before missing two free throws that rolled off the rim with 3.3 seconds left.
However, he came through in the end.
“God blessed me with a third opportunity,” Thompson said. “I guess the third time is the charm.”
Two years ago, Thompson’s game-winner against Washington helped push the Huskies into a late-season collapse that ended in the National Invitation Tournament while the Beavers soared to their first NCAA tournament in 26 years.
The Huskies’ postseason resume took a hit this week, but they play four of their final six regular-season games at Alaska Airlines Arena where they’re 13-2. UW hosts Utah on Thursday.
“You got to have a short-term memory and you got to move forward,” Hopkins said. “We got to go protect our home court. It’s hard to win on the road. It’s hard to win in this league. … You can’t get too high, you can’t get too low.
“There will be some good lessons to learn from this and that’s how you’re able to win in March.”