Oregon Ducks Knock Off Utah To Keep NCAA Tournament Hopes Alive


The game of the year and the home finale for the Oregon Ducks arrived with some special guests on hand with the honoring of the Oregon Ducks Football team at halftime. In the game there are also implications for an NCAA Tournament berth and the ever important placement in the upcoming Pac-12 Tournament. A win by Oregon today puts them in third place in the Conference and likely out of a game with Arizona until the final round of the Pac-12 Tournament.

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It is also the final home game for some key pieces of the Oregon Basketball team including Joseph Young and Jalil Abdul-Bassit. Oregon would need to get off to a quick start against a Utah team that has size and big men up front. The Utes held Oregon State to just five points in the first eight minutes on Thursday night in Corvallis and came away with a win entering today’s game with Oregon.

Oregon won the opening tip but it was Utah that scored the first five points with Poetl with two shots inside the paint. Oregon picked up a steal and Jordan Bell had a dunk to put the Ducks on the board before Utah hit a three to extend their lead to 7-2. Poetl picked up his second foul just five minutes into the game. Dillon Brooks would go to the line for two free throws and miss one. He would then get a rebound basket to tie the game at 9. The game would be tied again at 19 when Ahmaad Rorie his his second three point shot of the game with 7:20 remaining. Following the play a held ball on the other end of the floor went Oregon’s way.

"I’m gonna miss the fans, and the teammates. I’m going to miss the nets and the rims out here. Senior Joseph Young on What He Will Miss About Matthew Knight Arena"

Joseph Young arrived late to the party and took in a two point shot with just over five minutes to go followed by a three point shot from Casey Benson giving the Ducks a five point lead at 24-19. Utah would pull some momentum back from Oregon on their next possession with an Offensive rebound and five points. Joseph Young would give Oregon back a five point lead and the Utes would have the final shot of the first half. It would not fall and Oregon would take a 32-27 lead into the break. The Ducks gave up fourteen points in the paint in the first half and Senior Joseph Young had four points in the first half with the supporting cast getting it done for the Oregon Ducks.

Senior Jalil Abdul-Bassit hit a three point shot to start the second half followed by a shot from Jordan Bell, but Utah struck right back to hold the Ducks lead at five points. Joseph Young made his presence felt in the second half with a steal and an easy two point layin. Dwayne Benjamin followed with a jump shot of his own and Oregon was up 43-37, but a goal tending call would give the Utes two points. Oregon would find Jordan Bell and Dwayne Benjamin in foul trouble, three each, before the final ten minutes of the game. Dillon Brooks would hit a three with just under six minutes to go to extend the Ducks lead to eight points 53-45. Oregon held the lead from halftime and did not allow Utah to get closer than two points. The final five minutes would be critical and Utah would enter that period after Poetl missing two free throws. Brooks would hit another two point shot out of a timeout to give the Ducks a ten point lead.

Dilon Wright would answer on the other end with a two pointer for Utah. Brandon Taylor would cut the Oregon lead to five points. Abdul-Basit would commit a foul and after a timeout Utah. The Utes could have a seven point swing in a matter of about forty seconds of game clock. Jordan Eldridge hit both free thows and Oregon was nursing a three point lead. Dillon Brooks would hit two free throws for the Ducks after a hard foul. Utah would miss a three point shot and Oregon would extend their lead with a slam buy Dillon Brooks to extend their lead to 59-52. An out of bounds review call woud go the Ducks way and Oregon would have possession with 1:53 to go. Joseph Young would land a three point shot and the over ten-thousand on hand would come to their feet as the Ducks took a 62-55 lead with 1:21 left.

Joseph Young would hit two free throws, appropriately at the end of the game as Oregon won 69-58 over Utah and kept their NCAA Hopes alive.

The Ducks pushed Utah to fourteen turnovers. Dillon Brooks had nineteen points, Joseph Young finished with fourteen including a key three point shot in the final three minutes to seal the win. Oregon would now hit the road this week to take on Cal and Stanford.