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The rivalry that paved the path for Oregon and Oregon State women's basketball

Although they didn’t realize it at the time, the rivalry between Oregon State's Carol Menken-Schaudt and University of Oregon's Bev Smith became the pillar that women’s basketball was built on in the northwest. Photo by Matt Scotton

EUGENE, Ore. – There weren’t always Final Four banners, or multi-million, state-of-the-art facilities, or thousands of fans packing in to watch women’s basketball.

There was a national fight for women’s equality that permeated the collegiate ranks, a fight for progress in the Title IX era and in Oregon, a fight to show that women’s basketball not only deserved equality – but demanded it.

“We played just as hard as any male athlete in our era,” said former University of Oregon athlete Bev Smith. “We need that opportunity to be equivalent and make our own way.”

“I'm going out there every game and you're getting everything I got,” said Carole Menken-Schaudt, who was a former Oregon State athlete.

Join Travis Teich Wednesday, May 24 at 6:30 p.m. #LiveonKMTR as he shares the story of the rivalry between Smith and Menken. Although they didn’t realize it at the time, this Beaver-Duck rivalry became the pillar that women’s basketball was built on in the northwest.

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