CORVALLIS – The No. 15 ranked Oregon State women's basketball team earned a 67-64 overtime win over No. 7 UCLA Friday evening in a thrilling contest at Gill Coliseum.
"This was just a great win," said Oregon State head coach Scott Rueck. "This team just continues to improve, and Gill continues to be a great team to play. Hats off to UCLA for playing tough and athletic. I was proud of this team for overcoming everything they threw at us. It speaks to our leadership. Our team kept their heads all game, and I couldn't be more proud of our fight."
Junior guard Katie McWilliams hit the game-tying basket with 25 seconds left in the fourth quarter to force overtime. McWilliams finished with 16 points, five rebounds and four assists in 44 minutes, as she continues her hot shooting.
Senior Marie Gulich came up huge in crunch time, scoring 14 of her 24 points in the fourth quarter and overtime, including four free throws to help ice the game down the stretch. The center finished 8-for-13 from the floor and 8-for-8 from the line, and also pulled down 12 rebounds and blocked three shots.
Sophomore Kat Tudor scored 14 points in the game, including an important triple in the overtime period. The guard nearly ended the game in regulation on a buzzer-beating 3-point attempt that rattled in and out. Fellow sophomore Mikayla Pivec finished with nine points and nine rebounds.
The Beavers shot 42.4 percent in the contest, compared to 33.3 percent for UCLA. Neither team led by more than seven points in the contest.
Oregon State used an early 7-0 run to go in front 8-5 at the game's first media timeout. UCLA battled back to tie the game at eight, and the teams headed to the second quarter level at 11.
UCLA scored six unanswered points early in the second frame to go in front by five mid-way through the period. The two sides would go back and forth from there, before the Bruins headed to the intermission up 27-23.
Oregon State would explode back in the third quarter, using eight unanswered points to go in front 37-32, prompting a UCLA timeout. The Bruins would answer with a 7-0 run to level the score at 39, before taking a one-point edge into the closing frame.
OSU wasted no time retaking the lead in the fourth quarter, as Gulich returned the advantage 10 seconds into the period. The game see-sawed back and forth from there. Gulich made a big play inside to give the Beavers the lead 51-50 with just under two minutes remaining. UCLA answered with a bucket, but Gulich again returned the lead to Oregon State, before the Bruins knocked down a triple to go up 55-53 with 43 seconds on the clock.
McWilliams came up with a big bucket on an inbounds play to level the score, and the Beavers played excellent defense on the final possession to force overtime.
UCLA scored the first five points of the extra period, before the Beavers battled back to retake the lead with less than two minutes left. The Bruins took the lead with 90 seconds remaining, but Gulich hit four free throws to hand the Beavers the 3-point win.
The Beavers will remain at home on Sunday, when they play host to USC in a game that will tip at 1 p.m.