For the second consecutive game, the Ducks scored 109 points, as the defeated the Western Oregon Wolves 109-65 in their final exhibition tune-up on Sunday. Oregon's rapid style of play was too much for the Wolves to handle. The Ducks, who had four starters score in double digits, shot 52.7 percent from the floor (48-of-91), caused 35 turnovers and recorded 18 steals en route to the 44 point victory.
Oregon was again led by sophomore forward Amanda Johnson's game-high 25 points and 11 rebounds. Johnson, who played 27 minutes, was 11-for-18 from the field and 3-for-6 from 3-point range and also finished with three blocks and two steals.
"The second half play of Amanda Johnson was very helpful to us," Coach Paul Westhead said. "She made some real key plays."
The Ducks started the game with a three guard lineup that included senior guard Taylor Lilley, senior guard Micaela Cocks and redshirt sophomore Nia Jackson alongside Johnson and junior forward Victoria Kenyon. The quickness of Jackson, Lilley and Cocks, who combined for 52 points, and the versatility of Kenyon and Johnson caused fits for the Wolves.
"I think it helps our scoring," said Westhead, of the three-guard lineup. "A nice surprise of that smaller lineup, Nia Jackson is making things happen."
Jackson had a coming out party. It was her second game back since returning from a season ending knee injury last season and if her 15-point, three assist performance in the first exhibition game wasn't proof that she is back, this one was. By halftime, Jackson had recorded 16 points, mostly all of them coming off of turnovers, coast-to-coast lay ups and opportunities that Jackson's court awareness and attacking mentality created. She finished the game with 23 points on 11-for-14 shooting, six assists, and six steals in 23 minutes.
Senior guard Taylor Lilley, who didn't play in the Oregon's 109-47 exhibition opener against Southern Oregon University because of a high right ankle sprain, returned to the floor for the Ducks on Sunday and showed no signs of fatigue or rust. She wasted little time trying to find her groove as she hit two of her first three point attempts and finished the first half and 13 points.
"I thought Taylor Lilley came out firing the ball again," Westhead said. "[Lilley] shot the ball well early, and she needed this game because she's kind of been on the shelf and not practicing a lot."
Lilley didn't score in the second half, but finished the game with five assists and three steals to go along with her 13 points.
Michaela Cocks, who was coming off of a 22-point performance against Southern Oregon, didn't score until there was eight minutes left in the first half, but finished the game with 16 points and five assists.
"All three of them (Lilley, Cocks and Jackson) can be a threat in that lineup," according to Westhead.
Junior forward Nicole Canepa also had another solid game coming off the bench for the Ducks, as she scored 10 points and recorded six rebounds in 16 minutes.
"I thought Nicole Canepa played very well," Westhead said. "She has impressed me in both exhibition games."
The full-court pressure that the Ducks applied until the final buzzer caused nightmares for the Wolves. The Ducks scored many of their points off of turnovers, and caused multiple five-second violations against the Wolves, but at times, their defense looked suspect and the Wolves managed to keep the game much closer than expected in the first half. Despite the turnovers that the Ducks' pressure caused, the Wolves got their fair share of fast-break points, layins and second chance points. At one point in the first quarter, after Western Oregon's Jamie Richardson stole the ball off the inbound and laid it in, the Wolves cut the Ducks' led to just four points, trailing 25-21.
That was as close as the Wolves would ever get.
Despite the second consecutive triple-digit effort from the Ducks, Westhead felt there are still many improvements that need to be made.
"Offensively I don't think we're sharp making out shots yet, we're not reading our passes, but these are all things that only games help you find out," Westhead said.
"These two games helped us to find out those gaps," Westhead said. "Now we have to cover them up."
Sophomore Jasmin Holliday did not play in Sunday's exhibition game due to family reasons. She is at her home in Chino Hills, Calif. and there is no word yet on when she will return to the Ducks.
Oregon officially open their 2009-2010 season at home against Eastern Washington Monday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m.
Ducks over Wolves 109-65
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