Starks gets Beavs back on track

AHMAD STARKS: 21 points in blowout win

AHMAD STARKS had 21 points and Oregon State pulled away from Texas-Pan American in the second half Monday afternoon for a 84-59 win.

Joe Burton had 18 points and tied a season high with 10 rebounds for Oregon State (10-3), which bounced back from its first home loss of the season, to heavy underdog Towson, two days earlier.

The Beavers got a win under their belts before opening Pac-12 Conference play Sunday at home against rival Oregon.

"It was really big, just to shake it off and not think about it going into Sunday's game," Ahmad Starks said of the Towson loss.

Hurley Johnson had 14 points and Aaron Urbanus 11 points and five assists for Texas-Pan American (7-9).

Texas-Pan American trailed by 18 at halftime but closed within 50-39 on an Aaron Urbanus three-pointer with 14:03 left. The Beavers answered with six straight points to go up 17 and then scored six more in a row to go up 66-43 and put the game out of reach.

Oregon State led by as many as 30 in the closing minutes. Starks, who made five three-pointers, ended a five-game slump in which he scored a combined 24 points.

"It's nice to see Ahmad sort of come back to his old self. I hope he's back for good," Beavers coach Craig Robinson said.

Starks, a 5-foot-9 senior guard, averaged more than 16 points per game before the five-game skid. He blamed his struggles on his mentality against recent mid-level opponents.

"I have to approach every game the same way. So I took the blame," Starks said. "I just wanted to come out and be aggressive and get a good feel going into conference play."

Teammate Eric Moreland got his fourth straight double-double and seventh of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Roberto Nelson added 11 points and five rebounds for the Beavers, who had a 45-23 rebounding edge. Burton scored Oregon State's first 10 points, helping the Beavers to a 10-6 lead. Starks later hit three three-pointers in a 15-4 run that put Oregon State up 25-13.

Texas-Pam American got as close as seven before the Beavers ended the half on a 13-2 run, including seven points from Starks, to lead 42-24 at halftime.

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