Alleyne sets Pac-12 record, but Oregon falls to Fresno State
EUGENE, Ore. - The Ducks rallied back from a 15-point first half deficit but could not complete the comeback against the Bulldogs of Fresno State, losing the game 68-59.
But Oregon senior forward Jillian Alleyne had a historic day, recording her 19th straight double-double with 26 points and 16 rebounds.
Alleyne broke the record for most consecutive double-doubles in Pac-12 history, a record that she previously shared with USC legend Cheryl Miller. Alleyne's streak is now tied for third longest in NCAA Women's basketball history, behind Artemis Spanou (33) and Courtney Paris (112).
"It was unbelievable to even by tied with Cheryl Miller," said Alleyne. "To have the record now just shows me that I can be this player that everyone believes that I can be. Now I just have to believe in myself, like don't think for one second that you aren't as good as other people, more in a humbling way though."
The three-ball turned out to make all the difference in this game. Oregon shot just 4-14 (28 percent) on the night, while Fresno State shot 8-17 (47 percent), seven of which were in the first half.
Fresno State jumped out to a hot start, knocking down three of their first five three-point attempts. The Ducks stayed aggressive though, managing to keep the score within 10 points for most of the half.
The Bulldogs were ferocious on defense, capitalizing on the Ducks mistakes and scoring 16 points off 10 first half turnovers by Oregon. The Ducks forced seven turnovers themselves, but were not able to convert any into points.
Oregon was able to cut the lead to four points with 6:22 to play, but the Bulldogs used the next four minutes to go on a 10-1 run and push the lead to 15.
The Ducks were able to compose themselves, and a key three-pointer from freshman Lexi Bando cut the lead to 10 going into the break down 44-34.
Oregon started the second half with intensity, forcing four early turnovers and holding the Bulldogs scoreless for the first 3:45 of the half.
The Ducks continued to battle, and a jumper from Bando tied the game at 53-53 with 9:04 to play.
From that point on, the Bulldogs returned to first-half form, mounting a 15-6 run in the final minutes to put the Ducks away, 68-59.
"We can definitely use this game as a lesson that we need to come out and start better," said junior Lexi Petersen. "We can't just keep digging ourselves into holes and expect to come back. We learned a lot from this game."
One of the many stats that jumped off of the page was points off turnovers. Oregon forced 17 turnovers, but only converted those into 3 points. Fresno State forced 14 turnovers, which led to 22 points.
"We weren't that aggressive," said Head Coach Kelly Graves. "We've just gotta make baskets. Second half we finally got our legs under us and competed a little bit better. We forced some turnovers, but then we didn't capitalize on them, unfortunately, at the other end."
Unfortunately, the Ducks will have to sit on this loss for a while, as they head home for the holiday break.
Oregon returns to Matthew Knight Arena on Dec. 29 for a game against Seattle U. The contest is the Ducks' final non-conference game of the year. Oregon opens Pac-12 play on Jan. 3 at USC.