Oregon loses yet another game in this 2008-09 campaign, losing in Pullman by the score of 67-38. Was it really as bad as the score indicates? Oh yes my friend, it was that bad. Washington State was up 17-2 at one point in the first half. There were bets going on in the Open Thread about whether or not we would have more turnovers than points in the game. Obviously the secret weapon, Mojo Jojo, couldn't even save the hapless Ducks as they struggled for everything. Here's some postgame reactions from Ernie...
On the play of the team
"We hit the wall a little bit, in the ballgame. I'm not saying they didn't want to play hard, they did want to play hard. Their bodies wouldn't let them play hard. They're beat up a little bit physically and I think they're worn down a little bit especially with everything they've been through"
Yeah, I can see that. This has been a rough year and when you lose as much as Oregon has this year, eventually you just get worn out...have that feeling of "here we go again" with no inclination that things are going to get any better. That being said, I do have to wonder about how the team prepared for this game. This wasn't even a competitive showing. Even in stinker games you expect to lose by 10-15 points but by almost 30? I'm not sure if we hit the wall or the wall hit us while we were standing in place.
On Josh Crittle
"He was a bright spot in the game and he continues to get better"
Josh Crittle has been getting a lot more minutes and seems to be progressing faster than Dunigan. I think Dunigan has more of the star power, and certainly was a bigger name at the beginning of the season, but Crittle is starting to outshine him, especially in ball control. Dunigan is still learning when to dribble and not get the ball taken away at the post. Crittle seems to be doing better and bringing the action to his opponents. His stat line didn't show the full effect of his game tonight but he had a great game in the rebounding department. Dunigan doesn't seem to be fouling nearly as much but is getting tired pretty quickly.
More on the play of the team
"I told this team just now, you're taking some butt-whoopings now that go back to the Luke and Luke days, obviously to the Malik Harriston days that we really kind of dominated some of these teams and they just need to make sure understand some of the intensity of the rivalries and understand what it's like on the road and make sure that when that tide turns, they step up and give some butt whoopins"
He's trying to keep the team's spirit up by comments like this and I certainly agree with him. All things go in cycles and we had some good streaks against teams in past years. Ernie also mentioned beating WSU 13 straight times before this year. No streak goes on forever but being hungry and remembering these times in the future will serve to help the team
Stats of the game: 10-48 - 21 percent field-goal shooting , 10 field goals TOTAL in the game, 5 in each half
That is not a misprint. I know I won't change anyone's mind who has their heart set on firing Ernie but that percentage is a direct result of not making open shots and layups in this game. There were several sequences in the game where a Duck player would miss a layup, get a rebound, miss another layup, get the ball again and then lose the ball or foul someone or just miss a third time. So many times we had open looks tonight against the Cougar defense and we would brick the shot. 21 percent field-goal shooting is just unacceptable in all regards.
If we continue to play this way, and we really have the entire season, I don't see any possibility of not going 0-18 in the Pac-10 this year.