March 4, 1999
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Senior guard Geno Carlisle scored 16 of his game-high 26 points in the second half as California came back for an important victory over Oregon State Thursday, defeating the Beavers, 68-61. With the win, the Bears improved to 17-10 overall, 8-9 in the Pac-10, and kept their NCAA Tournament hopes alive heading into Saturdays season-finale at Oregon.
Neither team could take control of the game in the first half -- OSUs biggest lead was four points and Cals was three -- and the squads headed into the locker room tied at 29-29 at intermission.
In the second half, OSU (12-14, 6-11) seemed to take the momentum with a 41-36 lead with 12:37 to go. But Carlisle, who made six of his seven shots from the field in the second half, sank and three-pointer and followed that up with a 15-foot jumper to tie the score at 41-all with 12:19 left.
Then with the game knotted at 45-45, Cal used a 13-5 run to grab the lead for good. Carlisle scored seven points during the stretch, and the Bears went up, 58-50, on a Thomas Kilgore jumper with 2:13 to go.
OSU repeatedly fouled the Bears down the stretch, but Cal made 10-of-12 from the free throw line in the final 1:20.
In addition to Carlisle, who totaled his Pac-10 high this year by scoring his most points since he had 29 against North Carolina Dec. 29, Kilgore added 14 and Mike Gill had 13. The Bears, who shot just 38.5 percent from the floor in the first half, made 48.1 percent of their shots after the break. Cal also turned the ball over just 10 times in the game, while forcing 17 Beaver turnovers.
"Down the stretch in the second half, I think we stepped it up," Cal head coach Ben Braun said. "I thought we did a great job stepping out on some ball screens and being aggressive. This was a big, big win for us ... one of our biggest wins of the year without a doubt."