by DSH basketball columnist Brian Mahuna
After a second half explosion in game one of the Global Sports Hardwood Challenge that carried the Ducks to a big victory over Pacific, the Ducks looked to rest, recover, and continue the rest of the weekend with the same dominance they have been exerting throughout the season thus far. None of that changed on Saturday when the Ducks took on North Dakota. Not only did this game mark the first time a Duck player had eclipsed double digits in rebounds, it was also the first time an Oregon player recorded a Double Double. But, speaking of double, it was just Mike Moser’s 13 point 15 rebound effort. It was also Elgin Cook’s 10 point 10 rebound effort. Two duck players recording double digit rebounds in one game this season means two things.
- 1.Coach Altman has been preaching about the importance of rebounding the basketball.
- 2.The players are listening.
JC skies free: Jason Calliste soars for two in a 91-76 win over North Dakota Saturday night (Ryan Kang, Oregon Daily Emerald photo).
Against North Dakota, it was apparent early on that the Ducks were far too strong for the Green and White to stand much of a chance. The Ducks’ speed and agressiveness on the defensive end led to bad shots, rebounds and run outs. The Ducks held North Dakota to just over 40% shooting for the game as well as under 20% from behind the three point line. Richard Amardi dropped in 15 points, a season high for him to go along with 8 rebounds, Jason Calliste added 15 as well. Joe Young, the Ducks’ go-to-guy dropped in another 23 points, giving him at least double figures in every game this season. The Ducks again showcased why they might be the deepest team in the nation, with 5 players scoring in double figures and all but two players grabbing a rebound.
As is the case with every basketball game, there were things that needed to be improved. The Ducks gave away 20 turnovers in the contest compared to only 15 assists. In a game against an overmatched foe like North Dakota, those turnovers arent going to hurt that much. But against Ole Miss, and Illinois, those turnovers can be the difference in the game.
A bit of a scary moment for the Duck when Sophomore guard Damyean Dotson went down with an ankle injury. My guess was that Coach Altman had an inkling that the game was under control and thought it best to rest Dotson for their final game against Cal Poly.
Player(s) of the Game: Joe Young/Mike Moser
Each of these transfer’s have had an insane impact on the young season for the Ducks. They have brought in veteran leadership and poise, and not to mention both of them are outstanding basketball players. Moser grabbing his 19th career double double is beginning to show signs of his sophomore season where he led the Conference in rebounding when he was at UNLV. Young simply continues to light up scoreboards. He’s unguardable in transition, can shoot the ball from deep and is crafty off the bounce.