Oregon responded Sunday evening with a 77-62 victory over Colorado to split the opening series of Pac-12 play. Utah previously beat Oregon last Friday ending the Ducks’ unbeaten mark against conference opponents.
Troy Brown turned in his best performance as the freshman scored 21 points and a career-high four steals. Elijah Brown and Kenny Wooten responded after tough openers with 17 points and 13 points respectively.
A complete effort remains to be seen by coach Dana Altman’s side despite forcing a season-high 20 turnovers. The offense sputtered throughout the game and committed 17 turnovers. Oregon’s defense proved to be the deciding factor in keeping Colorado from winning.
For the first time this season, the Ducks will leave the confines of Matthew Knight Arena for an extended road trip. The Arizona schools loom the following weekend, but business starts with in-state rival, Oregon State, in a hostile Gil Coliseum.
Oregon State had a season to forget last year after Tres Tinkle missed playing time with an injury. He played a critical role two years ago when the Beavers beat the Ducks at home.
Now healthy, Tinkle leads the Beavers, averaging 18 points per game and grabbing nearly seven rebounds per game. Stephen Thompson Jr. and Drew Eubanks provide steady offense and defense. Eubanks leads the team with 28 blocks.
The Beavers have a solid first-year player in Ethan Thompson, the brother of Stephen. A freshman from Los Angeles, Thompson is averaging 10 points per game along with 13 steals through 14 games.
After beginning the year losing three of their first five games, Oregon State went on a six-game winning streak, defeating non-quality teams. The Beavers saw their streak end on the road against Kent State.
A win against Colorado got Oregon State off to a good start in the Pac-12 play but will be entering the Civil War coming off a 66-64 loss to Utah. The loss gave the Utes a sweep of the Oregon schools on the road for the first time since joining the conference.
Like any rivalry, statistics never play a role, especially when the Ducks and the Beavers faceoff. Both teams will be physical with some scrappy play bound to ensue.
The Ducks will look to play a complete 40 minutes while the Beavers look to get revenge after being swept in the Civil War series last season.
Tipoff begins at 7:00 p.m. with a telecast on FS1.