Coming off an emotional Civil War win against the Oregon State Beavers, the No. 7 Oregon Ducks picked up a 74-55 road victory against the Colorado Buffaloes on Friday night in Boulder, Colorado.
With the win, Oregon improved to 19-4 and 8-1 in the Pac-12. It’s Colorado’s fifth loss in a row, dropping its record to 11-9 and 2-7 in the conference.
The Ducks were led by the dynamic duo of Sabrina Ionescu and Ruthy Hebard, who led all scorers with a combined 34 points and 16 rebounds. Ionescu finished the game with 14 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, while Hebard ended her night with 20 points and nine rebounds . Justine Hall, playing in her home state, came off the bench and knocked down two-of-three 3-point attempts.
According to Graves during the postgame radio show, Maite Cazorla, who left the game with an injury, will not play against Utah and could be out “for a while.”
Kennedy Leonard led the Buffaloes with 16 points and nine rebounds. The Buffaloes out-rebounded the Ducks 40-39, which included pulling in five more offensive rebounds.
Oregon started the game cold, shooting 4-of-14 to start the game, and trailed by one after the first quarter. The Ducks opened the second quarter on an 18-2 run to give the Ducks a 15-point lead. Oregon led for the rest of the game.
Mallory McGwire made her third consecutive start, replacing the injured Lexi Bando, who is still out indefinitely. McGwire finished the game with two points on one-of-four shooting and four rebounds.
This matchup always has special meaning for Graves and Colorado Buffaloes head coach JR Payne, who played for him at St. Mary’s and coached with him at Gonzaga. Graves conducted his halftime interview with Payne’s kids by his side.
UCLA and Stanford both won on Friday so Oregon’s first place lead in the Pac-12 remains one game.
Next up for the Ducks is a trip to Salt Lake City to play the Utah Utes at 11 a.m. on Sunday.
Follow Zak Laster on Twitter @zlast3445