CORVALLIS — Mike Ladd scored a career-high 23 points and Washington State held off Oregon State down the stretch Saturday afternoon for a 71-68 men’s basketball win at Gill Coliseum.
Brock Motum added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Cougars (11-9, 2-5 Pac-12), who won on the road for the first time in five tries this season.
Ahmad Starks had 17 points and eight assists for Oregon State (11-9, 1-6). Starks was wide of the mark on a potential game-tying 3-pointer from the top of the arc in the game’s closing seconds. That followed Washington State’s DaVonte Lacy’s two missed free throws and Starks’ layup with 7.9 seconds left to cut the Cougars’ advantage to one.
Washington State’s Royce Woolridge then made two foul shots, setting up Starks’ final attempt.
Ladd’s layup gave Washington State its first lead of the second half at 37-36 after the Cougars trailed by four at halftime. Oregon State came back with a 7-2 run, as Joe Burton’s layup put the Beavers back up four.
Motum later hit his third 3-pointer of the second half to give the Cougars the lead for good, 54-51. Motum then made two free throws with 8:42 left after a technical foul on Oregon State coach Craig Robinson. That gave Motum 15 points in the second half and Washington State a five-point lead.
D.J. Shelton added a 3-pointer with 6:42 left to make it an 8-0 Cougars run. Oregon State closed within 63-60 on a jumper by Starks with 3:57 left.
“There were still opportunities for us to win the game in spite of everything that was going on," Robinson said. “Pretty much, that’s all you can ask for."
Devon Collier and Roberto Nelson had 14 points apiece for the Beavers, who were trying to sweep Washington and Washington State in a weekend set for the first time since 2005.
The Beavers got within two points twice in the closing minutes, the last time at 66-64 on Collier’s layup with 1:24 remaining. Woolridge scored the last seven points for the Cougars, including a free throw to make it 69-64 with 51 seconds left.
“I felt like it was my time to step up and show some poise and some leadership," Woolridge said, adding that he felt as though he didn’t do much the rest of the game. It had been lackluster afternoon for Woolridge, who finished two of 10 from the floor and scored nine points.
Washington State had a 39-27 rebounding edge, including 10 rebounds by D.J. Shelton.