The PK Diaries: Progress for Oregon State is an angry Thanksgiving
A year ago, Oregon State's tough loss to Duke would have been worthy a parade. But here in 2022, Wayne Tinkle and the Beavers instead go home hungry.
PORTLAND — Wayne Tinkle contradicted himself on Thursday.
“I just can’t sit here and say we took a step forward in a loss,” said the Oregon State coach after a 54-51 loss to No. 8 Duke at Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
As adamant as his statement was, it was in fact the most ringing endorsement he could have given this team.
That’s never something he would have said last season, amidst a 3-28 snowball of misery.
Not a loss like this.
Not after his Beavers were beaten, bruised and battered on the interior, yet still had a chance to send the game to overtime in the closing seconds because of their unrelenting effort.
No, last season, this would have been a crowning moment, final score and all. So, yes, these Beavers have taken a step forward. And maybe a few.
Throw that No. 8 ranking away. Toss that 5-star talent to the side, and those Blue Devils guards that have been in more of these games than you can count. For a moment, lay expectations to rest. Then, let Duke coach John Scheyer do Tinkle one better:
“We didn't have that same edge that Oregon State had today,” he said.
The Beavers took it to a college basketball blue-blood on Thursday afternoon.
“It turned into a little bit of a blood bath,” Tinkle said. “We defended our tails off. This is one of the better defensive efforts I've seen from one of my teams.”