Plagued by mental mistakes, foul problems and a lack of discipline, the Washington Huskies lost to the Oregon Ducks 86-73 Sunday night in Eugene, virtually eliminating any chance they might have had of receiving an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament (box). The Huskies (16-13, 8-9), who have dropped seven of their past nine, will have to defeat Washington State Wednesday and win at least two games in the Pac-12 Tournament to have any chance to reach the Big Dance.
The 13th-ranked Ducks, who will likely enter the Pac-12 Tournament as the league’s No. 1 seed, improved to 23-6 and have won 25 consecutive home games dating to last season. Elgin Cook led the Ducks with 26 points and seven rebounds and Dillon Brooks added 19 as the Ducks ended the season with an 18-0 home record.
The Huskies allowed Oregon a 3-pointer to end the first half to trail 40-32, then were smoked to start the second half, yielding a dunk, a layup and a 3-pointer to fall behind 47-32. Washington closed to six points down, but could not recover from Oregon’s fast start after intermission.
“Obviously, Oregon is a good team and we weren’t able to get it done. We didn’t shoot the ball well. They kind of imposed their will on us. We’ve been in so many close games, and now the question is how we’ll bounce back. We have to make sure we come out (Wednesday) and treat the Washington State game like it’s a championship game. It’s disappointing that we didn’t do better this season. I’d like to see our team get rewarded for its efforts, but it hasn’t happened.” — UW head coach Lorenzo Romar
“When we messed up tonight, they capitalized off it. They definitely get after it. We think we can compete with any team, but they were a good team and they really capitalized on our mistakes. We just haven’t been able to have two consistent halves this season” — UW freshman Matisse Thybulle
Andrew Andrews, the Pac-12’s leading scorer (20.3 entering the game), led Washington with 21 points (16 in the second half), but missed five of six 3-pointers. Andrews, who contributed eight assists, became the fifth Husky to surpass 1,000 career points in conference games, joining Chris Welp, Todd MacCulloch, Eldridge Recasner and Quincy Pondexter . . . Freshman Dejounte Murray added 20 points, three rebounds and two assists . . Matisse Thybulle tallied 13 points and made three of the four 3-balls he attempted . . . The Ducks dominated Washington on the boards, 41-27.
Washington has not won in Eugene since 2010 and has not posted back-to-back victories since late January . . . Freshman Marquese Chriss spent a majority of the game on the bench in foul trouble. He finally fouled out in the second half after scoring only six points . . . The Huskies, the nation’s top shot-blocking team, had only one against the Ducks and need 12 against WSU Wednesday to break Arizona State’s Pac-12 record of 211 set three seasons ago.
Washington concludes its regular season by hosting Washington State Wednesday at 8 p.m. ( ESPNU). The Pac-12 Tournament begins March 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.