The Oregon Ducks (13-7, 3-4) will look to split the season series against the Oregon State Beavers (11-8, 3-4) on Saturday as the Civil War comes to Matthew Knight Arena.
Momentum appears to be trending in the right direction despite a few tough losses through seven games of conference play. The focus for coach Dana Altman is getting his players to close out games.
Oregon got off to a fast start against UCLA in the previous game and managed to build a double-digit lead. The Ducks allowed the Bruins to get within one point late in the game but did just enough to secure the win.
The Ducks’ offense has got off to slow starts to begin play, often leading to playing from behind. Oregon managed to come back to defeat Arizona State but did not have the same results against Arizona and USC. In short, the Ducks are not out of the Pac-12 picture just yet but need to find consistency.
Oregon State comes to Eugene with an opportunity to sweep the Civil War series. In the first meeting of the series, Oregon’s offense could maintain any rhythm, falling 76-64. The Ducks shot only 36 percent from the floor.
Tres Tinkle was undoubtedly the Beavers’ x-factor, leading the team with 19 points and 12 rebounds. He ignited a 12-1 run in the second half which led to the Ducks’ demise in Corvallis. Tinkle did not play in the Civil War last year due to injury but made up for his absence by factoring into the game.
Payton Pritchard will hope for a better outing against the Beavers after only scoring nine points. All of his points came in the second half. Pritchard will not be the only starter on the Ducks looking for better fortunes as all of Oregon’s starters combined for only 32 points.
Troy Brown and Ethan Thompson are first-year standouts for the Ducks and the Beavers, respectively. Both did not factor last game on the scoreboard but should a matchup to watch.
For Oregon, their bench players could play a critical role as contributions have been significant. Paul White came off the bench and led the Ducks in scoring from the last meeting. In recent games, Victor Bailey Jr. and MiKyle McIntosh have provided a spark for the Ducks’ offense off the bench.
The Beavers are coming off a series split against the Los Angeles schools at home. Oregon State beat UCLA but fell to USC.
Tipoff begins at 5:00 p.m. with a telecast on the Pac-12 Networks.