MBB | Bol-less Ducks Defeat Boise State 66-54

Playing without the team’s star freshman center Bol Bol, Oregon men’s basketball knocked off Boise State 66-54 in Matthew Knight Arena on Saturday night. The team announced just 30 minutes prior to tip-off that Bol was unavailable for the game due to a lower-leg injury. The first of two games against each other over the next two weeks, the Ducks leaned on junior point guard Payton Pritchard (19 points and five rebounds) and contributions from a variety of others (highlighted by 25 points off the bench) in his absence to win the first round over the Broncos. 

It was a lethargic first half of offense for either side, with both the Ducks and Broncos suffering from separate scoring droughts of several minutes at a time. But in the absence of Bol, Oregon got productive contributions from its bench players. With Boise State leading 15-12, Victory Bailey Jr. went on a six-point spurt to give his team the lead, turning a loose ball into a dunk and then converting a four-point play the next possession after being fouled on a three point shot. The sophomore guard combined with freshman Francis Okoro, who racked up four first-half points with more minutes available for the Ducks’ bigs, to keep their team close. But outside of the two youngster’s 4-6 shooting, the rest of the Ducks shot just 4-17 from the floor. While Oregon leaned on its depth, the Broncos were reliant on the three to take a 28-24 lead into the second half. But despite going 6-10 from deep in the opening half, Boise State shot just 4-15 from inside the arc.

Just as they did in Wednesday’s win over San Diego, Oregon jumped out of the gates in the second half, locking down the perimeter on defense and hitting seven of its first 10 shots en route to a 19-7 run in the first eight and a half minutes. But perhaps most importantly, after being out-rebounded 18-12 in the first half, the Ducks tallied a 10-3 advantage during the half’s opening run. Oregon turned that into an overall margin of plus-seven by the game’s end. Though the offense cooled off, going four minutes without a field goal in the middle of the half, the Ducks cruised the rest of the way to the win. 

GAME STORY (by Alex Castle)


POSTGAME AUDIO

Head Coach Dana Altman

Forward Paul White and Guard Victory Bailey Jr. 

MBB | Gritty Second Half Pushes Oregon Past San Diego 65-55

Behind Bol Bol’s 20 points and an aggressive defense that forced 16 turnovers and tallied six blocks, the Oregon men’s basketball (6-3) team defeated San Diego (8-3) by a score of 65-55 on Wednesday night. Oregon started slow on offense in the first half, going through two different stretches of more than three minutes without a field goal. This opened the door for San Diego to build a lead that grew to as much as nine thanks to 10 points from Olin Carter III and an efficient offense that shot 48% from the field in the first half. But after Ehab Amin gave the Ducks a productive six minutes off the bench with five points and three steals (he’d finish with the night with four), the team found a new resolve on defense. Oregon forced San Diego into six turnovers in the final five minutes and translated that disruptive play into a four of five shooting stretch to cut the lead to 32-31 at the break. The Ducks carried that momentum into the second half, hitting its first five shots while the Toreros went just 2-6 and grabbing the lead for the first time since the game’s opening minutes. Oregon struggled to pull away, leading by just four with eight minutes to play after going 2 of its next 12 and relying on San Diego to send them to the line, where the Ducks finished 15-21 as the Toreros struggled with foul trouble. After going nearly five minutes without a field goal, a short run from Oregon extended its lead to eight but San Diego wouldn’t go away by keeping pace with some timely threes. In the end, the Ducks outworked the Toreros on the boards, snagging 11 on the offensive end and bullying their way to 30 points in the paint en route to the win. Oregon has now won consecutive games and will look to match its season high of three-in-a-row on Saturday against Boise State. Listen below to the full game story and postgame interviews.

Game Story (by Alex Castle)

POSTGAME INTERVIEWS

Head Coach Dana Altman

Center Bol Bol and Guard Ehab Amin