Sunday’s Civil War game between the Beavers and Ducks did not live up to the standard set by Friday’s thrilling Oregon State win, as Oregon gained a large early lead, and defended it all night, leading to a 75-63 Oregon win.
Oregon State was shut down early by a tough Oregon defense, only scoring 7 points in the first quarter, and 11 in the second. Oregon also struggled to score in the first, but broke open the game in the second, behind some great shooting from forward Satou Sabally. Oregon had a 40-18 lead by halftime, and despite the Beavers finally finding some scoring the second half, they never really came close to erasing that deficit.
Oregon now stands 18-3 overall, with a 7-1 conference record. That’s good enough to keep that at the front of a crowded PAC-12 field, but not by much, especially with UCLA taking out Stanford tonight. Oregon State is a little further back, ant 14-5 with a 5-3 PAC-12 record, and it will be tough now to challenge for the conference crown.
Continuing her strong effort in the last few games, Kat Tudor was once again the top scorer for the Beavers. She showed a great deal of versatility tonight; she not only was dangerous from beyond the arc, as per usual, she was also adept at driving the ball to the post. She finished with 17 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists.
Marie Gulich continued her strong season, with 16 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 blocks, but could not control the post the way she has in her more dominant games this season. The Ducks were able to game plan around her much more effectively compared to the first game in the series.
While Oregon’s plan for that game centered entirely around Sabrina Ionescu and Ruthy Hebard, tonight’s game was a much more balanced effort. Satou Sabally was the lead scorer for the Ducks, hitting a few threes early in the second quarter that first build the big Duck lead. She finished the night with 21 points and 5 rebounds.
Ionescu, despite not being the centerpiece of the Oregon offense, still managed a strong game. Ionescu finished with 15 points, 11 assists, and 5 rebounds. The fact that the Ducks were able to put together such a dominant victory without a monster, 30 point game from Ionescu shows just how deep and talented this Oregon team is.
Oregon State gets back on the road, still looking for their first conference win away from Gill Coliseum, against Utah on Friday, January 26th. The Utes have a similar record to the Beavers (14-5, 5-3 in conference), and are still looking for a signature win to prove they can compete in the PAC-12. This is a win the Beavers need if they want to stay in the conference race.
Oregon, meanwhile, is also on the road, travelling to face a struggling Colorado team. The Buffaloes are 2-8 so far in conference play, and competing with the Ducks is going to be a tall order.