Roeland Schaftenaar had 19 points and six assists and Oregon State nearly blew a 21-point lead before holding on for a 75-69 win against Texas-El Paso in the opening game of the College Basketball Invitational's best-of-three championship series.
Randy Culpepper scored 20 points to lead UTEP (22-13).
The second game of the series is Wednesday at UTEP. The third game, if necessary, will be Friday, also in El Paso.
Oregon State (17-17) scored the first nine points of the game, held a 35-29 lead at halftime and opened the second half with a 17-2 run to
go ahead 52-31.
The Miners narrowed it to three points late in the game, as Stefon Jackson scored seven points in a 10-0 run and Arnett Moultrie's dunk with 1:14 left made it 66-63 Oregon State.
Lathen Wallace added 18 points, Seth Tarver 17 and Rickey Claitt
13 for Oregon State.
Jackson had 17 points and Moultrie 16 for UTEP.
Jackson, averaging 24.6 points per game, had scored 20 or more
points in 12 straight games.
UTEP entered the game in the top five in the country in free throws made and attempted, but the Miners had just nine attempts, making eight. Their previous low for attempts was 16.
The Beavers shot 26 of 43 from the floor. UTEP was 28 of 63.
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