No. 8 Ducks Set For Rivalry Showdown in Corvallis
EUGENE, Ore. - The Oregon women's basketball team face its first Pac-12 road challenge of the season on Sunday as the No. 8 ranked Ducks head up the road to Corvallis for a rivalry matchup against No. 15 Oregon State.
Oregon (4-0) is coming off a dominant 2-0 weekend to kick off the 2020-21 conference schedule and its quest for a fourth straight regular-season Pac-12 championship. The No. 15 ranked Beavers represent the first top-25 opponent this year for the Ducks, who last season broke the program record with a stellar 12-1 record against ranked teams.
The Ducks enter Sunday's game with the longest active winning streak in the nation at 23 games dating back to last season, breaking the program record of 21 set in 1978-79.
Matchup: #8 Oregon (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) at #15 Oregon State (3-1, 1-1 Pac-12)
Date: Sunday, December 13, 2020
Location: Corvallis, Ore.
Venue: Gill Coliseum
Opening Tip: 4:06 p.m. PT
TV: Pac-12 Network
PxP: Ann Schatz | Analyst: Elise Woodward
Radio: Oregon Sports Network
Eugene: KUGN 590 AM | Portland: KDZR 1640 AM
PXP: Terry Jonz
By The Numbers
12 - Oregon has had 12 different players score twice already this season, and at least 10 Ducks have scored in all four games
20 - Freshman Te-Hina Paopao (below) is tied for the Pac-12 lead with 20 assists through four games while averaging 7.0 PPG.
23 - Oregon has won a program-record 23 straight games dating back to 2019-20, the longest active win streak in the nation.
42.2 - UO 's 42.2 scoring margin ranks fourth in the nation through four games, with the Ducks limiting opponents to just 49.8 PPG.
43 - Oregon held Utah to just 43 points on Sunday, tied for the fewest UO has allowed in a conference game since 2008-09.
106 - This is the 106th meeting between Oregon and Oregon State, with the Ducks holding a 63-41 advantage in the all-time series.
A Win Would...
» Extend Oregon's program-record and NCAA-best winning streak to 24 games.
» Be UO's 21st straight in Pac-12 play and 11th straight on the road.
» Make Oregon 3-0 to start Pac-12 play for the second time in the last three years, and 5-0 overall for the third straight year.
» Be the Ducks' third in a row vs. Oregon State, fifth in the last six meetings, and second straight in Corvallis.
Series History vs. Oregon State
All-Time Series Record: Oregon leads, 63-41
Current Streak: Oregon W2
Last Meeting: Oregon won, 66-57 (1/26/20 in Corvallis)
Just Keep Winning
Oregon is 2-0 to start Pac-12 play for the fourth year in a row and 4-0 overall for the third straight season, giving the Ducks a program-record 23 consecutive wins dating back to last season, the longest active winning streak in the nation. UO has also won 20 straight conference games and 10 consecutive road games entering Sunday's game in Corvallis.
Stellar Defensive Effort Leads to 42-Point Win
Oregon improved to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in Pac-12 play while pushing its program-record winning streak to 23 games on Sunday with an 85-43 rout of Utah, fueled by a terrific defensive performance. UO's aggressive defense held Utah to just 2-of-12 shooting in the first quarter as the Ducks raced out to a 20-4 lead, and Oregon went on to limit the Utes to 28.6 percent shooting from the floor while forcing 19 total turnovers. Nyara Sabally led the defensive effort with four blocks, and Erin Boley had a team-best three steals. Utah's 43 points are the fewest allowed by the Ducks this season, and tied for the fewest points Oregon has given up in a conference game since the 2008-09 season. "That was the story of the game," Kelly Graves said of the defensive effort.
Historic Win Opens Pac-12 Play
Oregon kicked off conference play in historic fashion with last Friday's 82-53 win vs. Colorado, winning its 22nd straight game dating back to last season to break the program record of 21 set more than 40 years ago (1978-79). The Ducks also set a new program record with their 20th straight home win, breaking the previous mark of 19 set in 2000. Oregon completed the weekend sweep with Sunday's win over Utah to extend those records and improve to 52-2 at home since the start of the 2017-18 season.
No Lack of Depth for New-Look Ducks
Kelly Graves wasted no time reloading a roster that lost four starters from last season's 31-2 squad - including three WNBA top-10 picks in Sabrina Ionescu, Satou Sabally and Ruthy Hebard. Oregon brought in the nation's top-ranked freshman class - made up of five top-25 recruits and McDonald's all-Americans - along with a pair of transfers to join four returners and two redshirts. The Ducks' depth has been on display early on in 2020-21 with 12 different players scoring against both Portland and Colorado, and at least 10 players have scored in every game so far. Eight Ducks are averaging 6.0 PPG or more entering Sunday, and nine players have already had at least one double-figure scoring performance.
Boley Showing She Can Do More as a Senior
Erin Boley is Oregon's lone returning starter in 2020-21, and the senior is looking to prove she can do more than just shoot the three in her final season. Arguably the nation's most lethal shooter from deep, Boley leads the Ducks with 16.8 PPG and is shooting a strong 44.4 percent from three-point range through four contests, but that's on just 18 attempts as she has been much more aggressive inside the arc and around the basket. The senior is shooting 56.3 percent (27-of-48) overall and is second on the team with 5.8 RPG. Boley led Oregon with a season-high 25 points on Nov. 30 at Portland while tying her career-highs for field goals (11) and rebounds (9), and she followed that up with back-to-back 17-point performances to open Pac-12 play. "Erin has set the tone early and showed she's more than just a catch-and-shoot, spot-up three-point shooter," Kelly Graves said.
Nyara Sabally Well Worth the Wait
It's been a long two-plus years for Nyara Sabally - who lost the opportunity to play with her sister Satou Sabally after suffering knee injuries in each of her first two seasons as a Duck - but early on in 2020-21 it seems the 6-foot-5 forward was well worth the wait. Sabally led Oregon with 20 points and 10 rebounds for her first career double-double in last Friday's win over Colorado, going a perfect 9-of-9 from the floor to tie for the fifth-best shooting performance in UO single-game history. Sabally is a terrific 19-of-27 (.704) from the field for 11.3 PPG through her first four career games while leading the Ducks with 31 total rebounds (7.8 RPG), including a team-best 12 on the offensive end. "It hurt my heart my heart to not be on the court with my teammates," Sabally said her double-double performance. "Now that I'm on the court, it's the best feeling ever."
Paopao Next in Graves' Line of Great Point Guards?
Few coaches have developed point guards as successfully as Kelly Graves, the mentor to the only two players ever to surpass 2,000 career points and 1,000 assists in Sabrina Ionescu and Courtney Vandersloot. With Ionescu's legendary career at an end and Minyon Moore gone after a terrific year as a grad transfer, Graves immediately turned to freshman Te-Hina Paopao, who he believes "has a chance a chance to be a real star." The first freshman to start a season opener for UO since Ionescu in 2016-17, Paopao leads Oregon and is tied for first in the Pac-12 with 20 assists against just seven turnovers through four games. Paopao (9.5 PPG) was more aggressive offensively in her first two career conference games, scoring 13 points on 3-of-6 shooting from deep against Colorado before going 7-of-11 from the field for 17 points on Sunday against Utah.
Oregon is scheduled to face Washington in Seattle next Saturday before closing out the 2020 calendar year on Monday, December 21, against Washington State in Pullman.