Ducks lead entire game before falling to Stanford in final 2 minutes
EUGENE, Ore. -- After keeping the lead for the entire game, the University of Oregon Ducks fell to the Stanford Cardinal 64-62 in the last two minutes of the face-off in Matthew Knight Arena Friday evening.
The Cardinal had three players in double digits: Karlie Samuelson with 18 points, Lili Thompson with 16, and Kaylee Johnson also with 16.
Lexi Petersen led the Ducks with 17 points, Lexi Bando added 15 points all on three-pointers, and although Jillian Alleyne grabbed 14 rebounds, she was held to only five points. Liz Brenner scored eight, Maite Cazorla scored seven and Jordan Loera scored six.
The win improved the Cardinal standing to 4-1 in Pac-12 play. The Ducks have now lost five games in a row and stand at 0-5 in conference play.
Oregon Head Coach Kelly Graves, who is normally upbeat in post game interviews, showed concern. "Well, that one really hurt," Graves said. "All the staff players down the stretch didn't make the plays that were necessary. But I'm proud of our effort. I'm proud of our hard work. I'm proud of our character. For a good portion of the game we played really well."
Graves shouldered some of the blame for the loss. "I obviously didn't make the right calls when we needed it." In four of the last five losses, the Ducks led at the half, and the Ducks went into the locker room with 36 points against the Cardinal 32. "They didn't get enough from me," Graves said, "and just too many turnovers late in the game."
"It's small solace, I know," Graves said, "because we are zero and five, bottom line. But the reality is we've shown we can play with anybody. We just have to close the deal."
"We have to win. Make one more stop, one more layup, one less turnover. There were ten chances in the last five minutes of that game in which we could have iced it, turned it, sealed it. And we didn't. That's the bottom line."
"We have to bounce back," Graves said. "This is a tough stretch. This is the fifth straight team in the top twenty-five we've played. All five of these teams that we have played in conference are in the top twenty-five. And we're not a top twenty-five team yet. We have to pick ourselves up and move on."
The Ducks will have their chance to bounce back this Sunday against California. The game, in Matthew Knight Arena, starts at 2 pm.