By Jerry Briggs
Special for the JB Replay
The UTSA Roadrunners were hoping to hear a referee’s whistle blow when guard Jordan Ivy-Curry drove to the basket with under 10 seconds left in Sunday’s game in Corvallis, Ore.
In the end, there was no foul called. Ivy-Curry’s layup attempt didn’t go in the bucket, and the Oregon State Beavers escaped with a 66-65 victory over the Roadrunners.
OSU’s Jordan Pope knocked down two free throws with 13 seconds left for what would be the last points of the ball game.
UTSA didn’t call time out, pushed the ball up the court and tried to make something happen. It didn’t work out, leaving the Roadrunners a field goal shy of what would have been their first win over a Power 5 opponent in 14 years.
“We had a couple of good opportunities there (at the end),” UTSA coach Steve Henson told radio voice Andy Everett. “We had a floater on the second-to-last possession that didn’t fall. Then with the game on the line, we came down (and) they kind of ran and jumped on Tuck (Christian Tucker).
“He passed it to Juice (Ivy-Curry). Juice had a strong attack. Did exactly what you’re supposed to do in that situation. (Tried to) attack the rim and draw a foul, and … would have loved to have seen him step to the free-throw line and win the ball game … but it didn’t happen.”
As a result, the Roadrunners lost for the 27th straight time against an opponent from one of the five major revenue-producing conferences.
They haven’t won a game against teams from the Pac-12, the Big 12, the Atlantic Coast Conference, the Big Ten or the SEC since 2009, in the 2009-10 season opener, when they beat the Big Ten’s Iowa Hawkeyes 62-50 in Iowa City.
It was Ivy-Curry’s first game of the season for UTSA after being announced as eligible on Saturday. He led the Roadrunners with 11 points, five rebounds and seven assists. Massal Diouf and Carlton Linguard Jr. had 10 points apiece. Diouf enjoyed a breakout performance with career bests of eight rebounds and four blocks.
Guard Jordan Pope paced the Beavers with 19 points. He knocked down three of four from three-point distance and was two for two — the last two of the game — at the line.
Oregon State 7-3
Army West Point at UTSA, Thursday, 7 p.m.
The Roadrunners led the Beavers for 28 minutes and 40 seconds of the 40-minute game. They were up by as many as nine points when they took a 31-22 lead with 2:23 left in the first half. After that, the game tightened. There were seven ties and 13 lead changes.
Both Ivy-Curry and Juan Reyna for UTSA were eligible to play for the first time this season after sitting out the first 10 games on an NCAA transfer rule. Ivy-Curry played well with 11 points, five rebounds and seven assists in 25 minutes off the bench. He shot 5 for 11 from the field. Reyna did not play.
UTSA announced Ivy-Curry and Reyna as eligible on Saturday morning in the wake of a court challenge to an NCAA rule that mandates athletes in all sports sit out a year in residence if they transfer two or more times during their careers.
A former high school star at La Marque High School in the Houston area, Ivy-Curry played two years at UTSA, transferred and played one season at the University of the Pacific in 2022-23 and then transferred back to UTSA last summer. In his last season with the Roadrunners, in 2021-22, he averaged 13.9 points.
Sophomore guard Adante’ Holiman returned to game action after sitting out the last two with concussion symptoms. He was scoreless in 14 minutes on 0 for 1 shooting.
Oregon State improved to 7-0 at home this season and to 4-0 against UTSA all time.
Who is Jordan Pope? He is a 6-2 sophomore from Oakley, Calif. He has scored in double figures in all 10 of OSU’s games this season. His 19 points against the Roadrunners were his most since back-to-back games of 25 against Appalachian State and Nebraska last month. Pope was slumping recently, hitting only nine of 32 from the field in his last two games.