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Amazing how much difference hitting shots has made for Oregon State.

After snapping a 10-game losing streak Dec. 21 by sinking 53.6 percent of their shots in an 83-61 beating of Nicholls State, the Beavers did even better on Thursday night. They made 55.7 percent from the field in toppling Utah 88-76.

Oregon State will aim to make it three straight on Monday when it hosts Sacramento State in a rescheduled game in Corvallis, Ore.

The team that shocked the world by making a run to an NCAA Tournament regional final back in March looked more like that group against Utah. Jarod Lucas tied his season high with 25 points and Warith Alatishe chipped in 16.

Three other players reached double figures, with Dashawn Davis adding eight assists to his 13 points.

“In previous games, guys might have thought twice before shooting a 3 or even a mid-range jumper,” Lucas said to the Corvallis Gazette-Times. “But the last two games, guys are really shooting the ball with a lot of confidence.”

Lucas is the team’s leading scorer at 13.8 points per game and has made 42.3 percent of his 3-pointers. Alatishe is the team’s other double-figure scorer at 11.8 points per game.

As for Sacramento State (4-6), it’s coming off a 64-51 loss Thursday against Big Sky Conference favorite Southern Utah. The Hornets have stumbled to an 0-3 start in the Big Sky.

Shooting issues were the big storyline at Southern Utah. Sacramento State made only 19 of 52 field-goal attempts, including 6 of 26 3-pointers. It highlighted the team’s big problem so far; the Hornets have made only 39.7 percent of their field goals.

Bryce Fowler is their only double-figure scorer at 16.3 points per game, but even he was unable to spark them much at Southern Utah, scoring just 12 points.

This is the third time the Beavers and Sacramento State have tried to play. Oregon State’s COVID-19 issues scotched the first meeting on Dec. 11 and the teams’ rescheduled Tuesday night game was postponed due to travel issues after storms racked the Pacific Northwest.

–Field Level Media