Ducks Force Overtime, Come Up Short In a High-Scoring Affair

Oregon @ Washington St. mens 103.Breedlove

The Oregon Ducks men’s basketball team traveled to Pullman and came up short in a 108-99 overtime loss to the Washington State Cougars at the Beasley Coliseum.

Thursday night’s showdown was as much of a reunion as it was a basketball game. Washington State’s Ernie Kent was a fixture at McArthur Court from 1997 to 2010. The former Duck is the winningest basketball coach in the program’s history; Kent finished his coaching career at Oregon with 235 wins and he also led the Ducks to two elite eight appearances in the NCAA Tournament.

Both teams got off to a scorching start and what was supposed to be a basketball game felt more like a track meet. The Cougars’ ball movement and exceptional floor spacing allowed them to create many open shots; Washington State connected on seven of its first 8 field goal attempts, and both Ike Iroegbu and big man Josh Hawkinson combined for 23 early points. On the flip side, the Ducks couldn’t miss anything either. Oregon hit 5 of its first 10 shots, and after getting off to a slow start in the previous two games, the Ducks’ high scoring guard Joseph Young scored eight early points to keep the Ducks within striking distance.

Considering how well both the Ducks and the Cougars were shooting the ball in the first half, they should have stayed on the court during halftime to stay warm. The first 20 minutes of the game saw a total of 109 points scored between both teams; it was the highest scoring first half that the Pac-12 Conference had seen this season. Oregon finished the first half with a well-balanced attack, as five of its players scored at least seven points or more. The Cougars’ scoring attack was tremendous, as well. They ended the first frame with three players scoring in double figures.

Joseph Young goes to the hoop against the Cougars.

Gary Breedlove

Joseph Young goes to the hoop against the Cougars.

The Cougars started the second half with a 57-52 lead, but it quickly vanished as the highflying Ducks went on a 9-0 run to regain the lead. Oregon couldn’t sustain its quick start to the half, however, as the Cougars kept working the ball inside. Hawkinson’s physical presence in the mid-post created open opportunities for his teammates, but his assertiveness was also benefitting his team, as well. The sophomore constantly found himself in the paint and the Ducks’ lack of size prevented them from impeding Hawkinson’s dominance.

While the first half of the game felt like a track meet, the second half felt more like a championship boxing match. The teams threw jabs at each other, but the opposition constantly found ways strike back. With 39 seconds left in the game the Ducks trailed 94-92, but their leading scorer was there to save the day. Ironically, it wasn’t Young’s scoring that helped the Ducks; it was his passing. The redshirt senior drove to the paint and found Elgin Cook for a layup to tie the game.

At the end of regulation, the game was tied 94-94. While the first 40 minutes of the game were close, the final five minutes were a whole different story. Oregon’s offense couldn’t buy a basket during the overtime period, scoring only 5 points. The Cougars, however, kept attacking the basket and Washington State produced 14 points during the final frame. Washington State finished with four players scoring in double figures, while three of them scored at least 20 points. The Cougars’ courageous effort and offensive exploits, along with Hawkinson’s 26 point performance, was too much for Oregon to handle.

The Ducks hope to get back to their winning ways when they travel to Seattle to face the Washington Huskies this Sunday night.

Top Photo by Gary Breedlove

Print Friendly

 Volunteer Position Openings:

--Media Management/Supervisor:  We are looking for someone beyond college age who can help manage students and mentor in a number of different departments. Expertise is not required as organizational skills and interest in guiding others.   --Assistant Football Analyst: Love college football and enjoy watching it for hours? We need associates to view games and find the techniques/teaching points we identify for them in advance.  You will be recognized in publications, and could have the opportunity to move to full Analyst.   --College Football Analyst: We are looking for Coaches, or retired coaches to help create analysis videos (we do the video part) that will be viewed by thousands, and will help young football players as well as fans understand the game much better. The national recognition will help your resume' as well as make an impact upon the game we all dearly love.   --Video Specialist: We are looking for help in the Eugene/Springfield area to assist with the shooting and editing of analysis videos.   All Positions: Send a resume' with full contact information and any writing samples you have to charles@fishduck.com  Again, these are volunteer positions donating five hours a week each.

Omar Garibay

Omar Garibay

My name is Omar Garibay and I am a journalism student at the University of Oregon. I was born and raised in Salem, Oregon and I have dreamed of living in Los Angeles since I was 14-years-old. My dream career would be to work for ESPN LA, The Los Angeles Times or as a beat writer for the Los Angeles Lakers or Dodgers. Twitter: @omargaribay8