No. 21 Cougars Hold Off Ducks, 75-70

March 13, 2008

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Derrick Low scored 18 points, and No. 21 Washington State beat Oregon 75-70 on Thursday night in the quarterfinals of the Pac-10 tournament.

Taylor Rochestie scored 16 points, Kyle Weaver had 14 points and seven assists, and Robbie Cowgill added 12 points and six rebounds for the third-seeded Cougars (24-7), who won for the seventh time in nine games.

Tajuan Porter scored 17 of his 20 points in the second half and Malik Hairston also had 20 points for Oregon (18-13), whose final hope for an NCAA tournament berth almost surely disappeared. Maarty Leunen added 11 points for the sixth-seeded Ducks.

The Ducks, who never led, drew within four points on Porter's fourth 3-pointer of the game with 1:25 remaining. But that was as close as Oregon would get as the Cougars were successful enough at the foul line down the stretch to earn the victory.

Both teams made more than half their shots -- Oregon shot 53.2 percent and WSU 52.1 percent. The Ducks committed 13 turnovers to only seven for the Cougars.

Oregon returned four starters from a team that won the Pac-10 tournament last year before reaching the final eight in the NCAA tournament. The Ducks started 8-1 this season, but losses to Nebraska and upstart Oakland (Mich.) at home in December signaled their downfall.

Oregon had been the only team that advanced to the semifinals in every Pac-10 tournament since the event resumed in 2002.

The Cougars had what appeared to be a comfortable 54-37 lead early in the second half, but Porter scored the last 10 points of a 14-4 Oregon run, trimming Washington State's lead to seven points with nine minutes remaining.

The Ducks used a three-point play by Hairston and a Churchill Odia's 3-pointer--his only basket of the game--to draw within five with 4:16 left.

Rochestie scored the game's first five points, the Cougars built a 16-5 lead in the first six minutes, and Rochestie's layup with 7:35 left before halftime made it 24-10.

The Cougars extended their lead to 20 points before a basket by Hairston and a 3-pointer by LeKendric Longmire in the final seconds of the first half made it 42-27.

WSU shot 16-for-26 including 5-for-7 from 3-point range in the first half and committed only two turnovers. Oregon was 10-for-21 including 4-for-11 from beyond the arc with seven turnovers.

Washington State beat Oregon by nine points in each of their regular-season games to end the Ducks' record 13-game winning streak in the series.

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