Women Advance After Beating EWU

After Oregon's 95-66 victory over Eastern Washington University on Thursday night in the first round of the WNIT Tournament, celebratory screams could be heard coming from UO's locker room, and rightfully so. The win, which ended a seven-game Duck losing streak, was Oregon's first since a February 13th victory against Arizona State.

It was also Oregon's first postseason win since 2007, when the Ducks defeated UC Santa Barbara in the first round of the WNIT.

After Oregon's 95-66 victory over Eastern Washington University on Thursday night in the first round of the WNIT Tournament, celebratory screams could be heard coming from UO's locker room, and rightfully so. The win, which ended a seven-game Duck losing streak, was Oregon's first since a February 13th victory against Arizona State. It was also Oregon's first postseason win since 2007, when the Ducks defeated UC Santa Barbara in the first round of the WNIT.

"The players were very excited," coach Paul Westhead said. "They've been going through some hard times when you play your best and you lose, so I think they kind of had a little sense of relief that they could get a win."

"It feels good to finally win," said Oregon guard Micaela Cocks. "It's been awhile.

"I think it's been weighing on all of us; It was finally time to turn that around," Westhead said.

This was the second time the Ducks and Eagles have faced each other this season. UO beat EWU 86-48 in the 2009-2010 season opener at Mac Court, Nov. 16., but didn't take the Eagles lightly.

The Ducks shot 52.2 percent from the field on 36-for-59 shooting and did most of their damage in the paint, where they scored 56 of their 95 points.

"We had some good inside play, which we haven't had for awhile, from Amanda Johnson, so we were able to get the ball in the lane, rather than doing all perimeter things."

Oregon, which was led by Cocks' game-high16 points and seven assists, had five players score in double-digits. Johnson scored 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to record her tenth double-double of the season. Jasmin Holliday chipped in 14 points and pulled down eight rebounds and Nicole Canepa and Nia Jackson scored 13 and 12 points respectively. The Ducks shared the ball well, as they dished out a total of 19 assists. All active players on Oregon's roster saw playing time. Ellyce Ironmonger scored a season-high seven points in just seven minutes of playing time.

"It's nice to see some of our players off the bench come in and help us out," Westhead said. "Maybe that's a sign going forward we'll get more people in that rotation that I've been trying to do all season."

Lilley, who was just 3-for-12 from the floor, was ineffective for most of the game after dislocating a finger on her right hand and having it reset by Oregon's trainers. She scored 9 points on three three-pointers and was the only UO starter who didn't score in double digits. Westhead said that although Lilley continued to play with the injury, she will be examined tomorrow for precautionary reasons.

Oregon held the Eagles to just 30 percent (23-for-76) shooting for the night and outrebounded EWU 55-41.

The Eagles, who end their season 19-12, led by 4 early in the first half, but Oregon held a 48-26 lead at half. Eventually, Oregon extended its lead to 35 with 9:31 to play in the second half.

"We just had to play with some confidence, and that's what we did," Lilley said. "You know, we know how to play and we just had to actually go out there and do it."

With the win, Oregon, which lost to USC in the Pac-10 Tournament Quarterfinals to USC 80-76, improved their overall record to 16-15. The win also means that Mac Court will see at least one more game, when the Ducks take on New Mexico Tuesday, Mar. 23 at 7:00 p.m., in the second round of the WNIT.

"We're happy for that opportunity," Westhead said.

As for now, the Ducks—and Mac Court—live to fight another day.


eDuck Top Stories