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Recap: Ducks Drop 51 in the Second Half to Beat Oregon State

Before I get started into the recap, I do want to mention that the production value of the radio broadcasts was not as good as it has been in the past. I'm not sure how good other feeds were but the KUGN feed had a lot of doubled commercials, breaks that were cut off and other strange things that just confuse me. I don't know much about the radio business but I don't remember a time when these mistakes were so "in your face". I'm hoping that the folks who handle the Oregon Broadcasts take a look at the game and really work through some of these errors. I hate commercials enough without having to hear 2 of them at the same time.

I learned a very valuable lesson last night as I sat listening to the Civil War men's hoops game. I should always trust Trumpetduck. I admit, I was a little nervous going into halftime with the Beavers holding such a big lead but how was I to know that Oregon would channel Chip Kelly in their offensive production? Everyone knows I'm a pro-Ernie guy and this game was an example of why I think he needs to stay. After all the adversity the team has faced this season, with the game looking like it was going to go the route we have become all too familiar with, adjustments were made and Oregon stormed back from a 14-point deficit to win the game by 10. We kept the Beavers off balance by turning on the press, switching from zones to man-to-man defenses and we started cutting off the backdoor plays that burned us for layups. Most of all, the players finally executed and executed well. It was great to see Oregon battle back and keep their heads in the game. 51 points in a half? Unbelievable. Here are some notes from Ernie.

The game ended up being a mini version of our season. We went through so much adversity in the game with LeKendric getting in foul trouble and I thought we played well at times and in stretches we weren't very good defensively in that first half. Even the crowd. They've been there the whole year and they were still there again. We made some adjustments to get some more energy into the game and then went to the press in the second half and that's something that we do and have done quite a bit and used it quite a bit. I thought they would struggle with it over there

There is a lot of truth in this. When the game started out, I couldn't help but think "Here we go again, Stanford was a fluke". At the first timeout in the second half, when Oregon State had built their biggest lead at 14, I honestly thought that there was no way we can come back. Whatever magic the team had developed the week before had flown out the window. I held out some faint hope, mainly centered around the idea that Oregon State had come back from 12 down at halftime in the previous meeting to win.

More on the Press

I thought the press was the difference in the game. We almost looked like Oregon of old where we went on one of those great runs and the crowd erupted and we continued to get stops.

Jake over at Building the Dam has a piece up about this very issue

On Oregon State

In the first half, we were shooting 50 percent from the field, 71 percent from the three, 87 percent from the free throw line and you're down ten! Shows you how good of a team they are

What a difference a year makes for our friends up in Corvallis. I don't think many people expected the Civil War games would be competitive this year but how much fun have they been? Even though both teams have gone the opposite way most people expected, the Oregon vs Oregon State matchups this year have been a lot of fun. My hat is off to Craig Robinson and what he has done to revitalize the program in Corvallis.

Running the 1-3-1 in practice

We kind of figured out some things on the 1-3-1. My hats off to my guys because we taught it to them and they played it all week long and it's kind of funny watching us play it but they ran into the same rhythm they went in I thought in practice and they pressed each other in practice and we got into a good rhythm.

Ernie gets all emo

I get a lot of questions from people on the outside asking me... "why are you still there? What is it? You take a lot of heat". I say, you know, in this game you are going to take a lot of heat. That's just the nature of our business and that's ok but I'm still here because of this community and that crowd. You just don't find this anywhere else for a team sitting there at 0-14 and your crowd is still there and your students rush the floor when you get your first victory and the come and they are so loud...THAT is what this is all about and that's Oregon basketball.

Ernie has made statements like this before but he almost seemed reflective here. Did this win mean more to him than he is letting on? In the audio from the game, he seemed genuinely touched by the crowd at Mac Court and the support he has been given. Moreso, he seems to be almost like a proud father...watching his kids graduate from high school. He also alluded to the personal stories of the players and how much would "come out" in the coming months about what they had to deal with personally.

Jerry Allen asks Matt Humphrey about the crowd noise at Mac Court

I was going to say something about that. I have never heard anything like that in my life (laughs)

Stat of the Game: After being down 14 points in the second half, Oregon went on a 19-0 run to take the lead and never gave it up.

Some other notes worth mentioning in the game.OSU went scoreless for 5:12 in the second half as the Ducks were making their run. Oregon shot 51 percent from the field, a game high this season. Tajuan Porter looks like he might be starting to find that balance he has been looking for. TP had 24 points and NO turnovers. Matt Humphrey had a career high 17 points and was 4 for 6 from beyond the arc. How good was the second half? We only gave up 1 turnover in the second half compared to 9 turnovers in the first half.