TEMPE — The Arizona State Sun Devils need to win games like these if they want to make the NCAA tournament. They fought through a cold shooting night from the perimeter to do just that, defeating the Oregon State Beavers 86-82 in overtime.
Jermaine Marshall lead the Sun Devils (17-6, 6-4) with 25 points, four rebounds, four assists and a steal, shooting 8-for-17 from the field, 3-for-10 from the 3-point line and 6-for-9 from the free-throw line. As a team, the Sun Devils shot just 5-for-17 (29.4 percent) from the 3-point line.
Jahii Carson had an opportunity to win at the buzzer, but his jumper rattled off the rim to force overtime. Carson ended the night with 23 points, six rebounds, six assists and three steals. He shot 13-for-18 from the free-throw line. Jordan Bachynski had one of his finest statistical games of the year, scoring 17 points with 15 rebounds and seven blocked shots.
Roberto Nelson, the Pac-12′s leading scorer, lead the Beavers (13-9, 5-5) with 26 points, despite having just two points at halftime. Eric Moreland pulled down 17 rebounds, Angus Brandt scored 13 points and Devon Collier added 13 points from the bench.
The Devils don’t have a strong tournament resume and play in a remarkably weak conference. They’ve defeated just one ranked team, No. 25 Marquette back in November. The Devils get another shot at the No. 2 Arizona Wildcats, but other than that, they’ll have to do more than just squeak by inferior opponents if they want to make the tournament.
Sun Devils by the Numbers
+10 — The Devils put together 16 steals plus blocks, 10 more than the Ducks.
11 — Joe Lunardi of ESPN.com has Arizona State getting into the tournament as a No. 11 seed right now.
279 — Jordan Bachynski’s block total for his collegiate career, a Pac-12 record.
Sun Devil Stud
Jordan Bachynski set a Pac-12 record and deserves this award for his stellar performance. 17 points, 15 rebounds and seven blocks is impressive in any setting and his 8-for-12 shooting was terrific. I would have liked him to go stronger to the bucket and get to the free-throw line more often, but that’s nitpicking.
Sun Devil Dud
Eric Jacobsen had a game to forget, as he fouled out in just 10 minutes of play. He scored three points with three rebounds and a steal, shooting just 1-for-7 from the field. Admire his aggressiveness, but perhaps some selective aggression will be better next time.
The Sun Devils will host the Oregon Ducks on Saturday, February 8, from Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe, Arizona.