by Brian Mahuna, DSH basketball columnist
In the third game in as many days there were questions as to how well conditioned the Ducks would be and if their performance would suffer. After drubbing Cal Poly 82-61 in a wire to wire route, the answer was a resounding NO.
The Ducks again posted five players in double figures scoring the basketball. Off the bench Richard Amardi continues to grow leading the team with 14 points and 6 rebounds. Elgin Cook cashed in on three offensive rebounds to help rattle in 14 of his own. The teams leading scorer, Joe Young dropped in 13 point to go along with 4 assists. Damyean Dotson continued his hot shooting and put any lingering doubts about his ankle to rest with a 13 point night as well. Johnathan Loyd showed why he’s one of Oregon’s greatest with a 13 point 5 rebound 5 assist night against the mustangs. Not only was this a great game for Loyd, it marked his 80th victory as a Duck. His feat puts him on a list with only 9 other players on it, and he has the chance to become the winningest Duck in the history of the program by the season’s end.
The ducks roared out of the gate, building a big lead in the first half before settling in and letting the pace slow down a bit. They shot a red hot 58% in the first half and their defense did it’s job forcing the Mustangs into a mediocre 44% shooting mark that would be the story for the rest of the game as Cal Poly finished with 40% shooting from the field and a dismal 22% mark from behind the three point line.
Austin powers: Waverly Austin looks shagadelic on the sky hook in the Ducks 82-61 victory over Cal Poly Sunday night at Matt Arena. The Ducks went 3-0 in the Global Sports Hardwood Challenge over the weekend, running their season record to 7-0, ranked 13th in the country (Don Ryan, AP photo).
After finishing with a season high 15 rebounds to go with 13 points against North Dakota, Mike Moser was a ghost on the court against the Mustangs. He finished with only 2 points and grabbed only a single rebound in 24 minutes. Moser only attempted 4 shots and one has to think the lead over Cal Poly might have been much higher had he been a viable scoring option for the Ducks. His lack of aggression offensively wasn’t missed as much because the Ducks got such a big lift from Amardi and Cook for the second game in a row. The Ducks also out-rebounded the Mustangs showing the emphasis on rebounding has been heard by the players.
This was the closest to a complete game that the Ducks have displayed all season. They wont the rebounding battle, shot the ball well, turned the ball over only 4 times vs 15 assists, and defended with great ball pressure and contested shots. The Ducks won every statistical category, including free throw shooting and 3 point percentage, against a Cal Poly team that absolutely shellacked North Dakota two nights before.
Player of the Game: Richard Amardi
Amardi is beginning to come into his own after have some laughable moments in his first few games. His past two games have produced 29 points, and 14 rebounds. He’s a big athletic forward that is a nice compliment to the finesse skill set that Moser brings to the floor. After finishing with 14 points and 6 rebounds against Cal Poly, arguably one of the better teams the Ducks have faced thus far, Amardi deserves this recognition.