A pair of 20-game losers skidding toward season’s end will get an opportunity to gain a bit of momentum on the eve of the Pacific-12 Conference tournament when Cal and Oregon State complete the regular season Saturday night in Corvallis, Ore.

Both teams are locked into position for next week’s event, with Oregon State (10-20, 4-15 Pac-12) sitting in 11th place and Cal (3-27, 2-17) in 12th.

Each program’s first-round opponent will be determined Saturday. The possibilities for both are Washington (8-12), Colorado (7-12) and Stanford (7-12).

A matchup with Stanford would be an interesting one for the Golden Bears, who surprised the rival Cardinal in both the 2020 and 2021 tournaments. On both occasions, Cal had finished the regular season with a pair of road losses to the Oregon schools.

This year, Cal takes a 14-game losing streak up to Oregon State, which crushed Cal 68-48 in a matchup on Jan. 22 in Berkeley, Calif.

Cal’s Kuany Kuany (15 points) and Oregon State’s Jordan Pope (19), both products of Prolific Prep in the San Francisco Bay Area, were their team’s leading scorers in that one.

Sam Alajiki had a team-high 11 points when the Golden Bears were drubbed 84-51 at Oregon on Thursday.

Cal senior Joel Brown is hoping his teammates still have some fight left for the remaining games.

“Adversity happens and it tests your character. So it’s just about how you react and bounce back,” Brown said. “It’s a tough situation with the record. Obviously you can look at the negatives. But I feel like there’s positives that many others don’t get.”

Oregon State will take a four-game losing streak into the regular-season finale. Like Cal, the Beavers took one on the chin Thursday night in an 83-60 home loss to Stanford.

Pope and Tyler Bilodeau had 11 points apiece for the Beavers.

Oregon State coach Wayne Tinkle knows anything is possible once the teams reach Las Vegas next week. In 2021 Tinkle’s Beavers caught fire at the right time, winning the Pac-12 tournament and going on a surprise run to the Elite Eight.

“You hope these guys can dig deep,” Tinkle said. “That’s what we talked about. Let’s try to build some momentum. Put a positive spin moving forward as a program.”

–Field Level Media