Oregon season ends with 31 wins against seven losses.

The magical run for the Oregon Ducks Men’s Basketball team came to an end in the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., as Oklahoma downed Oregon, 80-68. The Ducks fell behind midway through the first half and could never find a rhythm to keep up with Buddy Hield and the Sooners.

Hield finished the game with 37 points with an impressive array of 3-point shots that the Ducks were helpless to stop. When Hield was not scoring, his teammates did the damage as the Sooners shot 46.6 percent from the field on 27-of-58 shooting including hitting 12-of-24 in 3-point shooting; Hield accounted for eight of those 3-pointers. Oklahoma also hit 14-for-17 from the free throw line.

Hield was aided in the cause by Jordan Woodard with 13 points and Isaiah Cousins with 11.

Oklahoma held a 38-32 advantage in rebounding and surprisingly had three more turnovers than Oregon (15-12).

Oregon was led in scoring by Elgin Cook with 24 points. Chris Boucher had 14 and Tyler Dorsey ended his season with 11 points. Boucher also had 10 rebounds. Jordan Bell, the other half of Oregon’s rim protector corps (along with Boucher) had four points, 12 rebounds and two blocked shots.

Oregon shot 38.9 percent in field goal shooting including going 4-for-21 in 3-pointers. The Ducks were 22-of-30 from the free throw line.

The Ducks’ woes began in the first half when Oregon only scored two points in nearly four and half minutes starting with 18:52 on the clock when the score was tied at 5 each. After the shooting drought which was caused by poor shot selection and not being able to get shots up due to turnovers, Oregon trailed 15-7 with 14:07 showing on the clock. Then later in the half at the 12:55 mark and trailing 17-13, the Ducks got cold again and didn’t score until 7:45 left in the half and trailing 24-15; from then on Oklahoma managed to build a lead of 18 at halftime, 48-30.

In the second half, Oregon gamely tried to whittle the 18 point lead down, but every opportunity the Ducks had seemed to be thwarted with poor shot selection, or good Oklahoma defense and Oregon could not reach minus 10 point. The final score of 80-68 was as close as Oregon could come to Oklahoma.

Notably, the star of Oregon’s win over Duke on Thursday, Dillon Brooks did not figure much into the game, at least from the scoring column. Brooks was saddled with foul problems and ended up scoring seven points. Ironically, prior to today’s game with Oklahoma, Brooks had inadvertently become involved in a controversy about his last shot in the Duke game, when he launched a 35-foot jumper as the shot clock was expiring and the game was well in hand for Oregon. Brooks’ shot went in and that drew criticism from Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski when the two teams shook hands following the final whistle. Apparently Krzyzewski scolded Brooks for taking the shot after the Blue Devils had literally stopped playing defense and had conceded the game. However, in the post-game media conference Krzyzewski denied that he had reprimanded Brooks. Just before the today’s game, Krzyzewski changed his story and issued a statement apologizing to Brooks, Oregon’s Head Coach Dana Altman and the University of Oregon for being critical of Brooks and also indicated he hoped the incident would not interfere with the Ducks’ preparation for the Elite-8 game with Oklahoma.

Today’s loss though was not about Oregon being distracted. It was about a better team, Oklahoma being better prepared and having a sensational performance by one of the college game’s very best, Hield. That’s what did in Oregon.

Looking back on the season, the Ducks were picked to finish fourth by the Pac-12 media corps in the pre-season prognostications. The Ducks won the conference outright and won the Pac-12 Tournament crown which was a significant accomplishment for Altman in his sixth year to win both the regular season conference championship and the Pac-12 Tournament championship in the same season.

The Ducks won all their home games and also went 31-7, the most wins in school history.

Oregon will return nearly the entire squad next year except for Cook and Dwayne Benjamin.; so bright things are ahead as Altman has steadily improved Oregon basketball every year since arriving in Eugene and year promises to be the most exciting ever for Oregon.

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