Eugene, OR – It was more of the atmosphere of a scrimmage as the Concordia (OR) Cavaliers, an NAIA school, visited Eugene to provide a workout for the Oregon Ducks. Concordia (8-2) actually has a strong squad for their competition level with two wins over Alaska-Anchorage and eight straight wins to start the year. Of course they can’t seriously compete against a Pac-12 school, with Oregon (5-2) coasting to a 94-63 win. Joseph Young (20 points) and Elgin Cook (19 points on 9-of-10 FG, eight rebounds) led the Ducks.
Dwayne Benjamin (11 points, six rebounds) returned to the court for Oregon after missing the last two contests due to a sprained ankle. That gave Oregon eight scholarship players for the game as center Michael Chandler (knee) is still not close to being ready to play.
Concordia cut a 21-point Oregon halftime lead to 53-40 early in the second half before Oregon reasserted themselves, coasting to the 31-point victory. The Ducks had a +30 edge in rebounding while shooting 5-of-26 (19.2 percent) on three-pointers.
This would have been a good game for Young to work on his long-distance shooting. He’s been in a shooting slump from behind the arc, shooting 28 percent on the year, and 4-of-24 (16.7 percent) in his last three games. That, combined with a 1-of-12 long-distance effort against Detroit, is giving consideration to the feeling that Young’s shooting is being hindered by his additional point-guard responsibilities. Unfortunately while he played a solid all-around game (eight rebounds, six assists, one turnover) Young’s long-distance shooting didn’t come around as he went 0-of-5 on 3’s. He did connect on several mid-range jumpers.
Jordan Bell (10 points, 11 rebounds, five blocks) continued to impress, providing excellent interior defense and rebounding. He also ran the court hard and came up with a few transition baskets. Bell needs to continue to improve as he will likely be the primary interior defensive presence when Pac-12 play begins.
Oregon took a 47-26 lead into halftime. Cook (11) and Young (10) led the Ducks in scoring. The 6’8 Bell helped with his defense and hustle with four blocked shots and six rebounds added to his six points. Benjamin was rusty on his shot (0-of-5 on 3’s) but was active with seven points and five rebounds. Oregon shot 1-of-16 on three-pointers in the half while having a +16 rebounding advantage.
Oregon will face Mississippi at home on Sunday before heading to Chicago to face Illinois on Saturday, December 13th. The Live Stats page on the Oregon website refused to believe the Ducks were playing Concordia, listing the opponent as Clemson. That might have been more interesting although the Tigers are not very strong this season.
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