Preview: Stanford at No. 11 Oregon

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Preview: Stanford at No. 11 Oregon

This game is more than just another win, although some Oregon players and coaches just see it that way. No. 11 Oregon is one step closer to history following its 86-63 win over California last Thursday night and welcome unranked Stanford (11-8, 3-4 Pac-12) tomorrow at 3 p.m.

With an Oregon win, first of all the Ducks will now be sitting on a 16-game win streak, the longest in program history and breaking the previous 15-game win streak over 100 years ago. Second, if the Ducks win, Oregon extends its home win streak to 38 games, second in the nation behind Kansas (49 games). A win last Thursday also secured Oregon coach Dana Altman's 20th straight winning season. What a week for Oregon basketball.  

A big question raised following Thursday's win against California is the status of junior forward Dillon Brooks, who walked off the court just before halftime with an apparent foot injury. Altman said the trainers are evaluating him and the team is waiting on the diagnosis.  

The 3-4 Stanford Cardinal started off the season 0-4 and has won the last three straight partly due to the activity of junior forward Reid Travis and a force under the hoop of junior forward Michael Humphrey. 

A quick look at the game:

Stanford at No. 11 Oregon

Where: Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, Ore. 

When: 3:00 p.m., Saturday January 21, 2017.

TV: Pac-12 Networks. 

Records: Ducks (17-2, 6-0 Pac-12), Cardinal (11-8, 3-4 Pac-12).   

Last outings: Oregon extended its current win streak to 15 with a dominant 86-63 performance at home over California. Stanford cruised past Oregon State in Corvallis, OR, 62-46. 

Coaches: UO's Dana Altman (171-66 at Oregon, 581-309 Division I). Stanford's Jerod Haase (11-8 at Stanford, 80-53 at Alabama-Birmingham).

Key Ducks: G Tyler Dorsey, 6-4, So., (12.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg, .385 3FG pct.), G Dylan Ennis, 6-2, Sr., (11.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 3.6 apg), G Payton Pritchard, 6-2, Fr., (8.1 ppg, 3.9 apg), F Jordan Bell, 6-9, Jr., (11.0 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 2.2 bpg), F Chris Boucher, 6-10, Sr., (13.0 ppg, 6.7 rpg).

Key Cardinal: F Michael Humphrey, 6-9, Jr. (9.6 ppg, 5.7 rpg), F Reid Travis, 6-8, Jr., (16.6 ppg, 8.9 rpg), G Marcus Allen, 6-3, Sr., (5.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg). 

Notes: An Oregon victory will break the programs' all-time winning streak of 15 games...Stanford has won the last three Pac-12 games in a row....Oregon looks to extend home win streak to 38 games. 

 

No. 11 Oregon chasing history; win 86-63 over Cal

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No. 11 Oregon chasing history; win 86-63 over Cal

How Oregon won: No. 11 Oregon made itself very comfortable from the three-point line tonight. The Ducks went 11-of-24 collectively as a team from three-point range behind the hot hand of junior guard Casey Benson's 5-of-5, 100 percent from the arc. No. 11 Oregon (17-2, 6-0 Pac-12) earned its 15th straight win with a 86-63 victory over the Cal Bears (13-6, 4-3 Pac-12).

"I've been saying it all along, if we take good ones, you know I thought we were better than what we were showing from the three," said Oregon coach Altman on his team's three-point percentage tonight. "I don't think we are going to be a 45 percent team, but we can shoot 40 [percent]. So it was a really good night for us. Casey [Benson] going 5-for-5 was really great." 

All eyes were on junior forward Dillon Brooks towards the end of the first half, but this time around was a different feeling. With 45 seconds remaining in the first half, junior forward Dillon Brooks left the court and headed for the locker room. He did not come back out with the team to warm up after halftime for what seemed to be a left foot injury. Brooks injured the same foot and was out for a few games at the beginning of the season. Still no word as to his condition or status for Stanford or beyond.

What it means: With this win, the Ducks are chasing history one step at a time. First of all, Oregon has now seven consecutive winning seasons. The last time this occured was 77 years ago (1934-1940). Second, this win extends Oregon's home win streak to 37, second in the nation behind Kansas (49 games). And third, the Ducks now sit on a 15-game win streak, which ties the longest in all-time Oregon program history. 

Key sequence: At 17:22 in the first half, it was Casey Benson's time to shine. It may seem simple, but Benson hit back-to-back huge three-pointers to extend the Ducks lead 16-12. But these two shots did more than just increase the score. Oregon rode the energy Benson brought off the bench and sparked a 9-3 run including a monster dunk from senior forward Chris Boucher to get him going as well. 

High flying Ducks: Off the bench, Benson demonstrated his leadership right away replacing Pritchard (foul trouble). Benson hit two quick three-pointers (both assists from Ennis), and wan't afraid to get physical under the hoop knocking the ball away from the Bears' big guys. Benson finished with 15 points on a perfect 5-of-5 from three-point range. Sophomore guard Tyler Dorsey was fearless driving to the hoop and either getting himself to the free throw line (he went 7-of-9) or dished out six assists. Tonight's MVP was junior forward Jordan Bell who finished with 26 points, six rebounds, two assists, and four blocks.  

Fowl play: Freshman guard Payton Pritchard got hit with two fouls early on and was forced to ride the bench most of the first half. Benson relieved him just three minutes into the game.

Up next: The Ducks host unranked Stanford (10-8, 2-4 Pac-12) for a mid-afternoon 3 p.m. start this Saturday at Matthew Knight Arena. 

No.11 Oregon hosts Cal with streaks on line as schedule toughens

No.11 Oregon hosts Cal with streaks on line as schedule toughens

Riding a 14-game winning streak and the second-longest active home winning streak in the NCAA (36 games), No.11 Oregon hosts Cal on Thursday. 

Oregon (16-2 overall, 5-0 Pac-12) has certainly found momentum, as the Ducks have beaten their past four opponents by an average of 26.5 points. However, those four opponents (Oregon State, Washington State, Washington, USC) all place in the bottom half of the Pac-12 Conference. 

The Golden Bears, currently at fourth-place, are coming off a big weekend of their own. Cal (13-5, 4-2) swept Washington and Washington State at home, including a last minute win over the Cougars. 

The question that looms... Can the Ducks continue to dominate during a tougher stretch of their schedule? After Cal, Oregon hosts Stanford, which also swept the Washington schools last weekend, before traveling to fifth-place Utah on Jan. 26. 

A quick look at the game:

Oregon vs. Washington

Where: Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, Ore. 

When: 6:05 p.m., Thursday January 19, 2017.

TV: ESPN2. 

Records: Ducks (16-2 overall, 5-0 Pac-12), Golden Bears (13-5, 4-2). 

Last outings: Oregon defeated Oregon State in record fashion, 85-43, at home. Cal snuck by Washington State, 58-54. 

Coaches: UO's Dana Altman (170-66 at Oregon, 580-309 Division I). Oregon’s next victory will secure Altman’s 20th straight winning season. Cal's Cuonzo Martin (54–31 at Cal, 178-113 overall).

Key Ducks: G Tyler Dorsey, 6-4, So., (12.7 ppg, 3.5 rpg, .391 3FG pct.), G Dylan Ennis, 6-2, Sr., (11.8 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.6 apg), G Payton Pritchard, 6-2, Fr., (8.3 ppg, 3.6 apg), F Jordan Bell, 6-9, Jr., (10.2 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 2.2 bpg), F Dillon Brooks, 6-7, Jr., (13.6 ppg, 2.5 rpg), F Chris Boucher, 6-10, Sr., (13.7 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 2.9 bpg).

Key Bears: F Ivan Rabb, 6-11, So. (15.6 ppg, 11.1 rpg), G Charlie Moore, 5-11, Fr., (14.6 ppg, 3.1 apg), G Jabari Bird, 6-6, Sr. (13.4 ppg, 4.8 rpg).

Notes: Important program milestones; the next Oregon victory will guarantee its seventh-straight winning season (which hasn't happened since 1934-40), an Oregon victory will also tie the programs' all-time winning streak of 15 games. 

No. 13 Oregon wins this war 85-43 over Oregon State

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No. 13 Oregon wins this war 85-43 over Oregon State

How Oregon won: It was all No. 13 Oregon in this one and it started at the tipoff. The Ducks team defense came to play and forced the Beavers into bad shots taking a commanding 21-0 lead early in the game. Ducks junior forward Jordan Bell made his presence known early and made things very difficult for Beavers forward Drew Eubanks, holding him to 10 points in the first half. Good defense on one end lead to better offense on the other. Oregon's shots seemed to be falling from just about anywhere. Oregon (16-2, 5-0 Pac-12) won the war this time 85-43 over rival Oregon State (4-14, 0-5 Pac-12).

"I thought our defensive intensity was very good to start the game," said Oregon coach Dana Altman. "Jordan Bell was really good to start the ball game... I liked our activity the whole first half. Didn't remember too many easy baskets. Guys really flew around pretty good."

Oregon took halftime up 41-13.

What it means: The Beavers were without star sophomore and captain Tres Tinkle and just can't seem to find any rhythm without him on the court. Oregon took advantage of his absence and focused their attention on good team defense, double-teaming on Eubanks when given the chance. This sort of "development game" is beneficial for players like freshman forward Keith Smith, junior forward Kavell Bigby-Williams, and junior forward Roman Sorkin. They each recorded decent minutes which will only benefit the Ducks' depth as the season progresses. 

Key sequence: Ducks freshman guard Payton Pritchard mentioned this week at practice that the Ducks need to get off to a better, more efficient start. Starting off the game on a 21-0 run sounds like a good beginning to a game. During this period, Oregon's defense, through blocked shots, rebounds, and forcing the Beavers into bad looks, helped kickstart their uptempo offense and set the tone early.

High flying Ducks: This was a group victory. Each Ducks player took a step in the right direction. Pritchard's shot is getting better and better. Pritchard finished with 17 points and was four for four from three-point range. Senior guard Dylan Ennis added 16 points and five assists. Bell had himself a block party with four individual blocks, two early on Eubanks, of a team-combined 10 blocks. Sophomore guard Tyler Dorsey was aggressive to the rim and got himself to the free throw line going five of eight at the line. Junior guard Casey Benson found his stroke behind the arc going three-of-four. 

This was a team victory. Oregon extends its win streak to 14 in a row.

Fowl play: Bigby-Williams ended his night with four fouls, but played 11 minutes and finished three of four from the free-throw line.

Up next: The Ducks host the unranked California Bears (13-5, 4-2 Pac-12) at 6 p.m. at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, OR.

Civil War Preview: No. 13 Oregon host Oregon State

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Civil War Preview: No. 13 Oregon host Oregon State

No. 13 Oregon hosts the 347th edition of the Civil War between the Ducks and Oregon State Beavers at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow night at Matthew Knight Arena. This series is the most-contested rivalry in college basketball. Oregon States leads this rivalry with 186 wins over Oregon.

In the last three games, three different Ducks have scored at least 28 points: junior forward Dillon Brooks (28 points vs. USC on Dec. 30), sophomore guard Tyler Dorsey (28 points at Washington on Jan. 4), and senior forward Chris Boucher (29 points at Washington State on Jan. 7).

In recent news, Dillon Brooks can now add another highlight to his basketball career. Brooks was named to the Wooden Award Midseason Top 25. He is one of five Pac-12 players on the list.

Although this Beavers squad is banged up with injuries to sophomore guard and captain Tres Tinkle (wrist) and senior center Cheikh N’Diaye (shoulder), the Ducks will have to keep an eye on sophomore guard Stephen Thompson Jr. who is shooting .467 percent from three-point range and sophomore forward Drew Eubanks who seems to be doing it all with counterpart Tinkle out.

"It's been a little tough start for them, with the injuries, you know and I know how injuries effect every team and then with [Tres] Tinkle out it's been tough for them," Oregon coach Dana Altman said at practice today. "I like their young talent and Wayne [coach Tinkle] has done a great job keeping them together and keeping them playing hard. In fact I haven't seen their UCLA game until this morning, and they hung right in there and really executed well. So we'll have to get ready to play and our guys will be excited to play... we should be ready to go." 

A quick look at the game:

Oregon State vs. Oregon

Where: Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, OR

When: 7:36 p.m.

TV: Pac-12 Networks. 

Records: Ducks (15-2 overall, 4-0 Pac-12), Beavers (4-13, 0-4 Pac-12). 

Last outings: Then No. 15 Oregon cruised past Washington State 85-66 last Saturday. The Beavers lost on the road to Washington 87-61 last Saturday.

Coaches: UO's Dana Altman (169-66 at Oregon, 702-333 overall). Oregon State’s Wayne Tinkle (36-27 at Oregon State, 194–118 overall).

Key Ducks: G Tyler Dorsey, 6-4, So., (11.3 ppg, 2.8 rpg, .450 3FG pct.), G Dylan Ennis, 6-2, Sr., (13.8 ppg, 4.5 rpg), G Payton Pritcahrd, 6-2, Fr., (8.0 ppg, 4.1 apg), F Jordan Bell, 6-9, Jr., (10.8 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.3 bpg), F Dillon Brooks, 6-7, Jr., (16.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg), F Chris Boucher, 6-10, Sr., (14.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 3.1 bpg).

Key Beavers: G Jaquori McLaughlin, 6-4, Fr. (10.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg), F Drew Eubanks, 6-10, So., (14.0 ppg, 8.1 rpg), G Kendal Manuel, 6-4, Fr. (5.6 ppg, 1.4 rpg), G Stephen Thompson Jr., 6-4, So., (8.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg).

Notes: This is the 347th edition of Civil War basketball making this rivalry the most contested in all of college basketball…The Ducks are currently on a 13-game win streak…Oregon’s current home win streak is at 35, second in the nation behind Kansas (48 games)….Oregon has had three different players to score more than 28 points in three consecutive games (Brooks vs. USC on Dec. 30, Dorsey vs. Washington on Jan. 4, Boucher vs. Washington State on Jan. 7).

Dillon Brooks will not face suspension, cleared to play in Civil War

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Dillon Brooks will not face suspension, cleared to play in Civil War

Oregon junior forward Dillon Brooks is officially back. It was reported this week from ESPN writer and reporter Andy Katz that the league decided Brooks will not face any suspension for his actions during the WSU game.

No. 13 Oregon, (then No. 15), ended its first conference road trip with a 85-66 win at Washington State late afternoon last Saturday. At the 13:25 minute mark in the first half, Brooks was going after his own rebound at the hoop, fell to the ground, and his foot, that was caught under him, snapped up and hit Cougars forward Josh Hawkinson in the groin. The referees called a flagrant two on Brooks and by rule an automatic ejection. 

The Pac-12 reviewed the play on Sunday and reporter no additional penalties to Brooks. 

Brooks is cleared to play in the first chapter of the Civil War this season vs. Oregon State (4-13, 0-4 Pac-12) at 7:30 p.m. this Saturday.

Will Oregon football's big time assistant hires enhance recruiting and is the basketball team resembling a Final Four contender?

Will Oregon football's big time assistant hires enhance recruiting and is the basketball team resembling a Final Four contender?

The latest DuckSquad podcast breaks down the most important Oregon football and basketball news. 

 

Oregon ascends AP Poll after sweep at Washington schools

Oregon ascends AP Poll after sweep at Washington schools

Oregon continues to climb the AP College Basketball Poll after sweeping the Washington schools on the road this weekend. The Ducks (15-2, 4-0 Pac-12) move up 2 spots to No. 13. 

Despite Dillon Brooks' flagrant two foul and resulting ejection, Oregon found life in the second half to handle Washington State, 85-66. Tyler Dorsey's career night lead the Ducks to a 83-61 victory over Washington

Baylor (15-0), who beat Oregon in November, moved to No. 1 in the poll. 

Other Pac-12 teams: UCLA is No. 4, Arizona is No. 16 and USC is No. 25. 

No. 15 Oregon finds life in the second half, routs Washington State 85-66

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No. 15 Oregon finds life in the second half, routs Washington State 85-66

How Oregon won: Oregon looked like two different teams in the first and second half. As junior forward Dillon Brooks was hit with a flagrant two foul (and automatic ejection) at 13:25 in the first half, it seemed as though that put the team in a rather funk for the rest of the half. Not sure what Oregon coach Dana Altman said in the locker room at halftime, but whatever it was, fifth-year senior guard Dylan Ennis and senior forward Chris Boucher came alive. The duo lead No. 15 Oregon (15-2, 4-0 Pac-12) past Washington State (9-6, 2-1 Pac-12) 85-66 to round out the Ducks first road trip of conference play. The Ducks continue its current win streak to now 13 in a row.

What it means: This team can win without Dillon Brooks. It has been proven earlier in the season with Books out due to injury. Although having Brooks on the court is better for the Ducks, Oregon can find ways through Boucher, Dorsey, Ennis, and the list goes on to win. Tonight was another display of yet another Ducks player stepping into the big role.    

Key sequence: The score was tied at 37 a piece at halftime. In the second half, Dylan Ennis stepped up in the absence of his Canadian counterpart Dillon Brooks. Ennis seemed to be involved in every play contributing in assists or points as the Ducks went on a 17-4 run starting around the 15:37 mark in the second half. With the score at a 45-43 Ducks lead, Ennis took over and penetrated into the lane to either hit a jumper in traffic or kick it out to his shooters getting both Sorkin and Boucher good looks from the three-point line. The Cougars had no answer for the Ducks swift ball movement. As a team, Oregon finished with 18 assists and six turnovers.

High flying Ducks: Speaking of the three-point line, Chris Boucher found himself very comfortable out behind the arc. The senior went six-of-nine (.667%) from three-point range. Boucher has typically been a good shooter so it wasn't out of the ordinary for his stroke to be falling tonight. He finished with 29 points and eight rebounds. Ennis also contributed 17 points and seven assists. 

Fowl play: Dillon Brooks left the game early, or rather hit with a flagrant two foul and an automatic ejection from the game, at the 13:25 minute mark in the first half. Brooks went up strong at the rim, missed, and when he hit the floor, after a scum for the rebound, his leg shot up and hit Cougars forward Josh Hawkinson in a sensitive area. Brooks was off to another good start but left the game with seven points, one rebound, and one assist. 

Up next: Oregon is back at home for the first chapter of the Civil War this season vs. Oregon State (4-13, 0-4 Pac-12) at 7:30 p.m. at Matthew Knight Arena. 

Oregon forward Jordan Bell injured at Washington

Oregon forward Jordan Bell injured at Washington

Update: Jordan Bell returned in the second half after being injured late in the first half.

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Oregon junior forward Jordan Bell was helped off the court tonight at Washington after appearing to injure his left knee.

The injury occurred at the 9:38 mark with Oregon leading 17-16 at Alaska Airlines Arena.

Bell appeard to bang his left knee against the leg of UO guard Dylan Ennis who was setting a screen for Bell during an in-bounds play. Bell stumbled but broke his fall with his two hands and right leg. Bell then tried to resume the play before going back down in obvious pain after placing weight on his left leg.

Bell remained on the floor during an entire commercial break before being helped off the court by Oregon staff members.

Bell left the game with four points and three rebounds in six minutes of action.