ALBANY, N.Y. — The road that led to this Elite Eight appearance began with a dead end. A cul-de-sac, to be exact.

There was, of course, a hoop out there, at the end of that block in Littleton, Colo., where the Beers kids grew up. That’s where Raegan Beers became who she is today — arguably the strongest, toughest player in women’s college basketball. Or, as she is now known, the player who powered Oregon State past Notre Dame in the Sweet 16 with 18 points, 13 rebounds and one astounding block.

Rocky is the oldest, followed by Raegan. Then Rowdy and youngest sister Rylie. They were all born within five years of each other, which worked out great for two-on-two basketball and worked out poorly for anyone who wanted to make it through the day without a new bruise.

“Brotherly love,” Raegan said, smiling. “Lots of scrapes, lots of bruises. Turned into fights, but that’s what brought me here today.”

And it also brought them to MVP Arena, too. The brothers, who play football at Florida International, had to work up the nerve earlier this week to ask football coach Mike MacIntyre if they could skip a practice to fly up to Albany. He said yes. (“It’s truly a blessing,” Rowdy said. “It made our year.”)

So, the whole family was here; they took up essentially an entire row of seats near the front of the Beavers’ section. As the buzzer sounded and the score became final — Oregon State 70, Notre Dame 65 — they were all giddy, grinning as they watched Raegan mob her teammates, celebrating the program’s first Elite Eight appearance since 2018. Rowdy and Rocky had cell phones out, taking videos and photos of their sister.

“She deserves this,” Rowdy said.

Added Rocky: “It’s surreal.”

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Does Oregon State have your attention yet? Raegan Beers and the Beavers’ statement game


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