December 11, 2011; Denver CO, USA; Oregon Ducks forward Amanda Johnson (11) during pre-game warmups before a game against the Denver Pioneers at Magness Arena. Mandatory Credit: Andrew B. Fielding-US PRESSWIRE

Oregon vs. Colorado Recap

As expected in the preview, the Oregon Ducks defeated the Colorado Buffaloes 67-62 at the Matt Court. However, it took 23 points in the second half from Amanda Johnson and a comeback from a 34-26 half-time deficit in order for the Ducks to prevail in this contest. Buffaloes star Chucky Jeffery led the way with 18 points, six steals, seven assists, and two blocks. However, she also shot just 33.3% from the floor and turned the ball over five times (+18 EFF) and was a terrible 1-8 from three. Amanda Johnson, on the other hand, put in a more consistent star performance for the Ducks (+26 EFF).

Johnson had just three points in the second half, but she finished with 26 points on the night with an incredible second half. She also added eight rebounds, made all three of her three-point attempts, and she went 11-12 from the free throw line.

Another player on the Ducks who was tabbed to have a big game was Jasmin Holliday. She played well, despite a 4-12 performance from the floor, as she had eight boards and blocked five shots. Holliday (+17 EFF) set a career-high for blocks and had no trouble holding Colorado’s three forwards to 13 points (20.6 PPG combined).

Coming into this game, Ariel Thomas had a streak of poor shooting performances and was slowly becoming a liability for the Ducks. Thomas had a good bounce-back performance with 13 points on 4-7 shooting, and she was sharp from beyond the arc (3-5). Better yet, Thomas added three steals and helped force nine missed shots (including an 0-6 from three) from guard Brittany Wilson.

Lexy Kresl was trigger-happy yesterday and attempted 14 three-pointers and made five of them. That yielded a decent shooting percentage from downtown, but taking 14 shots from downtown isn’t the best way to help your team. She had 17 points (+13 EFF) in what was a mediocre game overall, but she was better than most of her teammates.

The Oregon Ducks committed 21 turnovers last night, and Liz Brenner was the biggest culprit with six TOs. She never attempted a field goal, and all six of her points came from eight free throw attempts. Brenner added five rebounds in a quiet, disappointing 24 minutes off the bench.

Both teams had 36 rebounds, so the stat that separated these two teams was foul shots. The Buffaloes attempted just five free throws, while the Ducks got to the charity stripe and astounding 32 times. Even more impressive is the fact that Oregon connected on 28 of them.

Colorado took 75 shots, while the Ducks had 44 attempts and had the slightly higher field goal percentage. What gave them the advantage was their 41.7% performance from downtown. The Buffaloes heaved 33 three’s but made just seven of them, which is completely unacceptable. Their willingness to take too many shots from long-range is a big problem, and that is always magnified when a team misses 26 of those shots.

The Buffs had 74 possessions in this game and averaged a meager .84 points per play. Yeah, the same amount of points that Draymond Green gives up for Michigan State on defense. Colorado was simply far too wasteful last night and were as inefficient as it gets (39.3 eFG%). Meanwhile, the Oregon Ducks used up 70 possessions and averaged .95 points per possession (44.3 eFG%). Both teams made seven three-pointers, but the difference is that it took nearly double the amount of shots for Colorado to match Oregon’s total.

Statistically speaking, the Oregon Ducks should have run away with this game. They were the more efficient team and had 25 more points off of foul shots than the Buffaloes. They did play a weak first half, and the scoreline definitely flattered Colorado. The Ducks came back in the second half behind star Amanda Johnson, and the team’s resurgence with her back shows her talent and importance to the team. It’s good to have the best Pac-12 player in women’s basketball back.

MVP: Amanda Johnson

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Tags: Amanda Johnson Ariel Thomas Brittany Wilson Chucky Jeffery Colorado Buffaloes Draymond Green Jasmin Holliday Lexy Kresl Liz Brenner Michigan State Oregon Ducks Women's Basketball

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