Stanford men’s basketball (17-9, 6-7 Pac-12) was swept at home last week by Arizona State and Arizona, but a trip to Seattle was just what the team needed to snap its four-game losing streak. Junior forward Oscar da Silva led Stanford’s offensive efforts as the Cardinal handled the Huskies on their home court and secured a 72-64 victory.
Thursday night’s contest marked just the second game since da Silva returned to competition following an undisclosed injury suffered at Colorado earlier this month. The junior was absent from the lineup for the first time this season when the Sun Devils visited the Farm and clinched a tense 74-69 win over the home team on Feb. 13. Though his homecoming to the court came against Arizona just two days later, da Silva fulfilled his familiar role as a powerhouse in the paint and added 13 points.
Against the Huskies, however, he upped his contribution to 16, perfectly in line with his 15.9 points per game average. A 6-for-11 showing from the field by da Silva helped the Cardinal post a 47.3% success rate for the night — its third-highest since Stanford suffered a shocking overtime loss to USC on Jan. 18 after leading the Trojans by 20 at the half. Complementary to da Silva’s skills on offense were his stats on the opposite side of the ball, where he posted two blocks and two steals, one of which was immediately dished to freshman Tyrell Terry who converted on a layup to add two points to his own 14-point total.
It was Washington’s shooting struggles, however, that helped da Silva reel in eight defensive boards on the stats sheet and the Cardinal finally tally another W onto their record. Only eight of the Huskies’ 30 attempts fell in the second half, while just four of their 24 heaves from behind the arc followed suit throughout the entire game, a reflection of being faced with a scrappy Cardinal defense — one that donned the title of No. 7 scoring defense in the country as late as Jan. 15.
Unfortunately for Stanford, the same pressure that forced the Huskies to rely on a 16-for-21 mark from the charity stripe to keep the Cardinal within reach sparked only 12 Washington turnovers; the 12 errors, however, were transformed into 20 points by a Stanford team looking for it first win on the road since Jan. 15. A steal by Terry with five minutes left before the break was perhaps most memorable — it left the 6’2” freshman all by himself for an unchallenged dunk on the other end.
A second opportunity for a road win comes on Sunday when Stanford travels to Washington State. Cardinal versus Cougars action tips off at 5 p.m. PT.
Contact Savanna Stewart at savnstew ‘at’ stanford.edu.