The Colorado Buffaloes destroyed the Oregon Ducks today, but the final score of 76-66 doesn’t truly convey the Buffs’ dominance. Haley Smith passed 1000 career points for Colorado, scoring 23 and grabbing 11 rebounds, and Kennedy Leonard had a double-double with 13 points and 10 assists. Ruthy Hebard rode a monstrous third quarter to finish with 24 points on 9-12 shooting, but received little help for most of the game. Ionescu finished with 16 points, but 10 of them came with under 4 minutes and Oregon trailing by 18. McGwire added 11 points and 7 rebounds.
This one was ugly from the get-go. The Ducks were outscored 25-8 in the first quarter while committing 6 turnovers and allowing 4 turnovers. No Duck scored more than 2 points. Smith scored 10 points and grabbed 5 rebounds in the quarter.
Things didn’t improve in the second quarter, as the lead grew. 5 more turnovers and a slew of fouls allowed Colorado to grow the lead to 20. A Lexi Bando 3 with 32 seconds remaining cut the lead back down to 17 heading into halftime.
The Ducks were able to limit their turnovers in the third quarter, and Colorado got a little sloppy to give Oregon some daylight. And Hebard exploded for 16 points in the period. This allowed Oregon to cut the lead to 12 heading into the fourth.
If Oregon had any momentum in the third quarter, it died in the fourth. The Buffs used a 10-0 run to push the lead out to 22. Ionescu made 4 shots over the final 5 minutes, but to no avail.
Up next the Ducks will face the California Golden Bears at Matt Court on Friday 2/24 at 6 PM.