Last game, the Ducks used a tenacious defense, limiting the Cal Bears to shoot only 33 percent from the floor. Oregon got off to fast start and never trailed, defeating Cal, 66-53, at Haas Pavilion on Thursday.
Troy Brown and Elijah Brown led the Ducks in scoring, handing the Bears a ninth-consecutive loss. Oregon took advantage of Cal’s early struggles and never showed any signs of panic despite the Bears making a late attempt in the game.
Overall, the game was not pretty for the Ducks, committing 17 turnovers in the game. Coach Dana Altman stressed he wanted his side to transition better off rebounds. The Ducks successfully pushed the tempo off defensive rebounds but, at times, got too cute with the passing and not take shots.
Oregon is looking to be perfect on this road trip but will be facing a different challenge in Stanford, unlike lowly Cal. Stanford currently sits fourth in the conference and hopes to make a push in the second half.
With the returners on the team, the Cardinal are a dark-horse in the Pac-12. A three-game losing streak set the Cardinal back in the standings but will be looking to sweep the Oregon schools at home.
Stanford defeated Oregon State on Thursday at Maples Pavilion. Reid Travis scored 21 of his 24 points in the first quarter as the Cardinal led by as much as 20 points against the Beavers. Oregon State made a few late runs in the second half, but Stanford fended off the rallies, hitting shots at the free throw line.
The Beavers lead the conference in scoring defense and field-goal percentage defense. Stanford went 56 percent from the floor, setting the tone early on offense.
Travis leads the Cardinal in points per game and rebound per game. Injuries limited him last season but are now at full health. Dorian Pickens and Michael Humphrey are also threats on offense.
Players off the bench could play a pivotal role on Saturday for both teams. Robert Cartwright and Oscar da Silva have efficiently performed for head coach Jerrod Haase.
MiKyle McIntosh has made himself a significant presence on Oregon as of late. Against the Bears, he recorded 13 points and 11 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season. He must continue the trend for the Ducks to remain in contention for the Pac-12 regular season title.
One area of strength for the Ducks this season has been the rebounding. The team is 12-1 this season when outrebounding opponents.
Oregon is also seeking a fourth-straight victory over Stanford as this will be the only meeting between the two teams. Last year, at Maples, the game went down to wire with the Ducks narrowly hanging on for the win. Dillon Brooks stripped Travis of the ball as he was attempting to drive the lane for the potential game-tying shot and the clock expired.
Tipoff begins at 2:00 p.m. PST with a telecast on FOX.