January 4, 1999
OAKLAND - Senior forward Michael Gill tipped in his own missed shot with 3.5 seconds left to lift No. 25 California to a 54-52 victory over Oregon State Monday at the Oakland Arena.
The Bears improved to 10-2 overall and 1-1 in the Pac-10, while OSU fell to 6-5 and 0-2.
Cal appeared to have things well in hand early in the game, running out to leads of 16-7 and 24-16 in the first half. But the Beavers held Cal without a point for the final 7:11 of the half and took a 25-24 lead into the locker room.
In the second half, Oregon State extended its lead to 37-30 on a Jason Heide dunk with 15:20 to go. At that point, the Bears went on a 10-2 run capped by a Thomas Kilgore three-pointer for a 40-39 lead with 10:39 left.
The lead continued to trade hands into the closing minutes when Cal got the ball with 24.6 seconds left. After a timeout, the Bears ran the clock down and fed the ball to Gill in the paint. Gill went up for the shot only to have it blocked by OSU's Clifton Jones. But Gill corralled the rebound and put it back in with 3.5 seconds left.
Oregon State had an opportunity for a final shot, but Deaundra Tanner was called for travelling and the Bears ran out the clock.
Gill and Sean Lampley led Cal with 11 points, while Lampley, Carl Boyd and Francisco Elson had seven rebounds each.
OREGON STATE HEAD Coach Eddie Payne:
"They (Oregon State) did a good job executing the game plan. I think several things ended up being the difference, the biggest being their (Cal's) athleticism and the work they did on the offensive glass."
"We had two wide open three's at key times, and we have to make shots like that to win a game like this. And you have to get a break. They easily could have called that a jump ball, and then we would have had possession. There are all kinds of things in a game like this you can look at."
"Our players did a fine job. Obviously, we made mistakes. But I think we deserved to win tonight, and we didn't. We've got to continue to get better."
CALIFORNIA HEAD COACH BEN BRAUN:
"I told our guys, would you rather look great and lose, or play ugly, but scrap it out and come out with a win? Hopefully, we will learn from this."
"We missed a lot of open shots. We really rushed ourselves inside. Our inside players had problems scoring-getting their shots to fall. I told our team, lets learn from the 49ers. Our inside players were kind of like Terrell Owens. Terrell Owens dropped four passes in a row, but like Steve Young said, you can't give up on these guys."
"Michael Gill probably had the redemption shot tonight."