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Hebard Heats Up Against Utah State, Ducks 88 - Aggies 58

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Oregon cruises to 30-point win on the road!

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Spokane Regional James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Ruthy Hebard and the No. 3 Oregon Women’s Basketball team outpaced the Utah State Aggies by a score of 88-58.

After a 30-point first quarter, the Ducks were able to keep the Aggies at arm’s length for the rest of the game.

Despite poor three-point shooting in the second half, Oregon was able to snuff out the competition behind efficient drives in the paint, accurate free throw shooting and a solid performance from the bench.

OREGON DUCKS

*Ruthy Hebard (27 min) 20 pts - 8 reb

*Sabrina Ionescu (34 min) 15 pts - 10 reb - 3 ast

*Erin Boley (27 min) 14 pts - 4 reb - 1 ast - 1 stl

*Satou Sabally (27 min) 12 pts - 1 reb - 4 ast - 1 blk

*Maite Cazorla (29 min) 6 pts - 3 reb - 5 ast - 2 stl

Taylor Chavez (21 min) 13 pts - 3 reb - 2 ast - 1 blk - 1 stl

Oti Gildon (13 min) 6 pts - 4 reb - 1 ast - 1 stl

Lydia Giomi (10 min) 2 pts - 1 reb - 1 blk - 1 stl

Morgan Yaeger (12 min) 1 ast

UTAH STATE STARTERS

*Shannon Dufficy (34 min) 14 pts - 12 reb - 4 ast -2 blk - 3 stl

*Rachel Brewster (22 min) 12 pts - 2 reb - 2 ast

*Eliza West (30 min) 8 pts - 4 reb - 6 ast - 1 stl

*Hailey Bassett (21 min) 6 pts - 1 stl

*Olivia West (27 min) 3 pts - 1 reb - 1 stl

Sabrina Ionescu saved the day in Oregon’s last contest with back to back three pointers against then No. 18 Syracuse, and against the Aggies she continued her dominant play.

The junior hit the game’s opening shot, a quick triple, and would ultimately earn a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds in 34 minutes. Ionescu played the most minutes out of any Duck as she guided the flow of the offense. Her 50% field goal percentage (5-of-10 FG, 3-of-6 3PT) was well below her average, but it’s safe to assume this is merely a slump.

Ruthy Hebard scored a game and season high of 20 points. The Aggies weren’t as well equipped to handle Hebard as the Orange was last Saturday which resulted in near perfect shooting from the floor.

A good sign for the season ahead is that she hit all 10 of her free throws. Hebard is sure to get plenty of time at the charity stripe so it’s crucial that she take full advantage of the easy points.

After finishing 7-of-13 from three-point range in the first half, Oregon missed all eight of their long range shots in the second. Only Ionescu hit more than one three-pointer for the Ducks and in general the long ball appears to be a potential point of emphasis during practice (39%, 30-of-76 on the season.)

This weak spot in Oregon’s game is an excellent opportunity for starters like Erin Boley, Maite Cazorla and Satou Sabally to make a huge difference. Cazorla and Sabally have already had games at Oregon in which they’ve excelled from deep and Boley was known as a sharpshooter before she transferred to Eugene. These starters need to channel their inner Lexi Bando!

Oregon has the starting five to beat anybody in the PAC-12, but if the Ducks intend to make it back to the conference championship game they’ll need their entire bench to contribute minutes in every game.

This game is the perfect model for how Coach Graves intends to spare his starters some mileage once a game gets out of hand. The bench scored 21 points against the Aggies, 13 of those belonged to Taylor Chavez. The freshman is already a reliable scorer off the bench and will look to increase her role as the season continues.

So far Oregon appears to be the dominant team of last year and looking ahead towards conference play there’s reason to believe that the Ducks could be 13-0 when they play the huskies in Eugene on January 4th.

Though a potential top-5 matchup against Mississippi State on Dec. 18th should give us a glimpse at what we can expect from these Ducks against elite competition.

GO DUCKS!


NEXT UP: BUFFALO

Sunday, 11/18, 2 PM, EUGENE, OREGON, OREGON LIVE STREAM

-Here’s a fun recap of last week’s thrilling victory over then No. 18 Syracuse!-