Oregon 78-73 winners over Fresno State

In a battle of the unbeaten teams, No. 21 Oregon Ducks took on the Fresno State Bulldogs on Nov. 30th at Matthew Knight Arena. The Ducks would end their night 6-0 following a 78-73 win and the Bulldogs 5-1. This is the first time in nine seasons that the Ducks have started the season with six straight wins.

(PHOTO) Oregon Ducks forward Chris Boucher (25) and Fresno State Bulldogs guard Marvelle Harris (23) watch as Fresno State Bulldogs forward Torren Jones (24) defends while Oregon Ducks forward Dillon Brooks (24) shoots the ball in the second half at Matthew Knight Arena. (Photo by Scott Olmos-USA TODAY Sports)

Dillon Brooks led the Ducks in scoring and rebounding with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Fresno State was paced by Marvelle Harris with 18 points and five rebounds. Oregon’s Chris Boucher, who set a school record of nine blocked shots on Nov. 20th against Arkansas State, had 14 points, five rebounds and five blocked shots.  The Ducks set a Knight Arena record against Arkansas State with 13 blocks in the game.

Boucher 14 points tied him with Elgin Cook as second top scorer of the game. Tyler Dorsey finished with 12.

The Ducks are heading into this game as the top dogs in the Pac-12 Conference and are ranked 40th nationally in scoring defense at 62.6 points per game and blocking 6.8 shots per game. Against the Bulldogs, the Ducks blocked a total of seven shots and caused 17 turnovers including stealing the ball 10 times. The Ducks didn’t do so well in taking care of the ball either, by committing 18 turnovers plus having four of their shots blocked.

“If we take out the 11 turnovers that we had, I thought we played pretty good offensively in the first half,” Head Coach Dana Altman said. “In the second half they shoot 50 percent for almost 50 points. They had a lot of easy shots and definitely not a good defensive second-half.”

Altman attributes the 18 turnovers to poor decision making and plans on getting some players like Kendall Small and Trevor Manuel more time on defense to help with the turnover margin. During the second half, Fresno State scored 48 points and caused Oregon to turn the ball over eight times.

The player of night was Brooks by getting a double-double and helping the Ducks continue their undefeated season.

“(Brooks) did make some plays down the stretch and you got to have someone to make those plays,” Altman said. “There were plenty of opportunities earlier in the half that we didn’t take advantage of.”

Oregon ended the night an ugly 4-17 (23.5 percent) in 3-point shooting. A less ugly number was Oregon’s field goal shooting at 24-55 (43.6 percent). The Ducks were 26-36 (72.2 percent) from the free throw line.

“If I don’t recognize what we are running, our percentages are really bad,” Altman said. “When I have a little idea of what we are trying to accomplish, our percentages go way up.”

 For the third time this season, The Oregon Ducks had a double digit lead heading into the final minutes of the game just to have the opponent rally back.

 “We are having a little trouble communicating, we don’t have a lot of guys that talk much on the court but on the bench and that’s just gotta improve,” Altman said.

 The Ducks will be traveling to Las Vegas to take on UNLV on Dec. 4th. Tipoff is set for 8:00 p.m. (Pacific) and can be seen on ESPN2 and ESPN3

 Official Box Score

Follow Keoni Conlu on Twitter: @kconlu13

eDuck Top Stories