2019.02.01.EMG.BCG.WBB.vs.Utah-2.jpg

Ducks forward Satou Sabally (0) snags the ball from Utah guard Kiana Moore (0). Oregon Ducks women’s basketball takes on University of Utah at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Ore. on Feb. 01, 2019. (Ben Green/Emerald)

With two minutes left in the third quarter, No. 4 Oregon women’s basketball’s Sabrina Ionescu turned the ball over, resulting in a layup by Utah’s Megan Huff and giving the Utes their second tie of the game. With a minute left, the Utes took their only lead at 56-54.

“We just needed to defend," Oregon senior guard Maite Cazorla said. "I mean, they were making 3s. We had to do a really good job defensively.”

An 11-point shooting spree from Satou Sabally reclaimed the lead for Oregon and held it to secure the 20-point win at 87-65.

Despite the late third-quarter scare, Oregon led most of the game, maintaining its spot at the top of the Pac-12. Sabally led the Ducks with 20 points, 13 in the second half. For the Utes, Huff earned a game and career-high 38 points.

“Everyone can score and everyone can drive in the paint,” Sabally said “We just played our game, got everyone the ball. We’re really not selfish players.”

Off 8-of-10 shooting, junior Ruthy Hebard scored 16, remaining perfect through halftime. Cazorla matched Hebard with 16 of her own, 14 of those coming in the second half.

“Maite attacked the basket, a little bit, gave us some calmness offensively,” Graves said. “We were organized a lot better in that fourth quarter." 

In front of a crowd of 7,773, the Ducks opened the game with a 9-2 run. Followed by another 11-3 run late in the quarter to end with an 11-point lead. Hebard and Sabally both shot 100 percent in the quarter with eight and seven points, respectively.

In the second, Utah responded with a 10-4 run to get within seven points of the Ducks, but behind Oti Gildon’s 5-of-6, 10-point half, the best of any Duck, Oregon led by ten into halftime at 37-27.

The Utes outscored Oregon in the second and third quarters, putting up a combined 45 points to Oregon’s 38. Two made free throws off a technical foul on the Oregon bench midway through the third, followed by a Utah 3-pointer put the Utes within three of the Ducks. 

The Utes grabbed their first lead with just under a minute left in the third quarter, but Sabally hit a 3-pointer off an assist from Cazorla to quickly take it back for the Ducks.

Early in the fourth, the Ducks went on an 11-0 run to put a 12-point berth between them and the Utes. Ionescu, who had just two points at half, scored 9 of her 11 points in the fourth quarter.

“Sabrina, let’s face it, she had a rough night for three quarters, but she played pretty well in the fourth,” Graves said. “That helped when she hit a couple. It’s like the whole team took a breath.”

The Ducks will host Colorado Sunday at 12 p.m.

Follow Sierra Webster on Twitter @WebsterSierraE. 

Sierra Webster is a sports reporter covering women's basketball, soccer and track and field. Find her work at www.sierrawebster.com. Contact: [email protected]


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