Pac-12 Tournament: Oregon defeats Colorado, Dante powers Ducks to NCAA Tournament

Mar 15, 2024; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Oregon Ducks center N'Faly Dante (1) and guard Kario Oquendo (0)
Mar 15, 2024; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Oregon Ducks center N'Faly Dante (1) and guard Kario Oquendo (0) / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon basketball is March Madness bound.

The way this season has gone, it ended up coming down to one game. It was in Las Vegas where the season started and on Saturday night vs Colorado it ended with a 75-68 Pac-12 Championship victory. The difference maker was clear the entire night.

N’Faly Dante went down with an injury a minute into the game on Friday night. It could have ended there. He came back to lead the Ducks to a win over Arizona.

On Saturday night, Dante came through when it mattered. He finished the game a perfect 12 for 12 with 25 points and 9 rebounds. His biggest play came with a block in the final two minutes.

The game was a back-and-forth battle throughout. The Ducks shot 46 percent from the floor and hit just three shots from distance in the game going just 11 percent from three-point range.

It was clear from the start that Dante would be the key to the win as Oregon finished with 46 points in the paint.

Oregon saw a defensive effort that continued from their win against Arizona getting 10 steals and forcing Colorado into 13 turnovers. The Ducks made work of the turnovers in the way of 23 points. Dana Altman’s team had just 3 turnovers in the game vs the Buffaloes.  

It was the sixth time Oregon raised the Pac-12 Tournament trophy. The first time was in 2003. The Ducks season has been a turbulent one. Sure, there are other words, but I have to keep it clean.

The NCAA Tournament committee has a decision to make. While the Ducks and Arizona are in, I expect and hope that Washington State and Colorado also find their way into the field on Sunday.

The selection show is set for Sunday at 3 p.m. PT on CBS.

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