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Cal rides huge run to beat Oregon State

March 08, 2007|Diane Pucin | Times Staff Writer

Using a dominating stretch of 10 minutes in the first half and just enough patience in the second, the eighth-seeded California Bears beat No. 9 Oregon State, 70-51, on Wednesday night in the first round of the Pacific 10 Conference tournament.

The Bears (15-16) will play top-seeded and fourth-ranked UCLA (26-4) today at Staples Center in the quarterfinals.

All it took for Cal was a 34-2 run that started after the Bears were behind, 13-6. They scored eight three-pointers in that stretch, including four from 6-foot-10 freshman forward Ryan Anderson. He finished with a game-high 27 points and 15 rebounds.

"I have no comment about the scoring run in the first half," Oregon State Coach Jay John said, "other than the fact it was phenomenal shooting from a depth we hadn't seen before. Kudos to Cal."

Bears Coach Ben Braun said he couldn't think of a better time to be playing UCLA. "We're playing against the best team in our league," he said. "It's not going to be that we don't know what we have to do, but doing it. Our guys are coming off a pretty solid game. This is as good a time to catch them as any."

Anderson said he had been impressed with UCLA's toughness this year. "How they come through in the clutch, it's great," he said. "At Pauley, we had a lead but they go on some huge runs. We need to stop those runs and keep it close."

Oregon State (11-21) finished a disappointing season with two players who were starters most of the year -- forward Sasa Cuic and guard Wesley Washington -- benched for the second half. "Coach's decision," was all John would say. Junior forward Marcel Jones of Los Angeles had 21 points for the Beavers.

diane.pucin@latimes.com

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Automatic bids

Teams to automatically qualify for the NCAA tournament so far:

MEN

* Belmont, Atlantic Sun Conference

* Creighton, Missouri Valley Conference

* Davidson, Southern Conference

* Eastern Kentucky, Ohio Valley Conference

* Gonzaga, West Coast Conference

* Niagara, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference

* North Texas, Sun Belt Conference

* Oral Roberts, Mid-Continent Conference

* Pennsylvania, Ivy League

* Central Conn. State, Northeast Conference

* Virginia Commonwealth, Colonial Athletic Assn.

* Weber State, Big Sky Conference

* Winthrop, Big South Conference

* Wright State, Horizon League

WOMEN

* Chattanooga, Southern Conference

* East Carolina, Conference USA

* Gonzaga, West Coast Conference

* Harvard, Ivy League

* Holy Cross, Patriot League

* Marist, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference

* Middle Tennessee, Sun Belt Conference

* North Carolina, Atlantic Coast Conference

* Oral Roberts, Mid-Continent Conference

* Purdue, Big Ten Conference

* Rutgers, Big East Conference

* Southeast Missouri, Ohio Valley Conference

* Stanford, Pacific 10 Conference

* Vanderbilt, Southeastern Conference

* Xavier, Atlantic 10 Conference

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