#Pac12WBB: No. 11 Ducks Lose Two Straight Falling To No. 1 Stanford

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. – No. 11 Oregon became the first team this season to take a lead into halftime against No. 1 Stanford, but the Cardinal used a big third quarter to win, 70-63, on Friday afternoon at Keiser Permanente Arena.

“Ultimately, I was really proud of my team,” said head coach Kelly Graves. “I truly was. I thought we battled these guys all the way to the end.”

The Ducks (8-2, 6-2) were unable to bounce back from last Sunday’s loss to UCLA with a victory, but Graves’ young team came out as the aggressors against the nation’s top-ranked team and kept fighting down the stretch after getting outscored 28-14 in the third quarter.

“I think we learned a lesson,” said Graves. “If we would have played this hard last week against UCLA, we win by double figures. So at least, as far as I’m concerned, we learned a lesson. Now we’ve just got to figure out how we take it to the next level and beat these teams.”

How it Happened: Two baskets by Erin Boley and one from Nyara Sabally fueled a 6-0 run that gave Oregon an 8-5 lead midway through the first, and Te-Hina Paopao followed another Boley jumper with a three-pointer to make it 17-11. Stanford (10-0, 8-0) cut the Ducks’ lead to three, but Maddie Scherr beat the first-quarter buzzer with a deep triple to put Oregon up six after the first 10 minutes.

Taylor Chavez – back with the team after missing last weekend due to a family matter – knocked down a three to push Oregon’s lead to seven, but Stanford quickly responded with five straight to make it a two-point game. After a jumper by Taylor Mikesell made it a four-point UO lead, the Cardinal rattled off six straight points to move ahead, 32-30. But the Ducks held Stanford scoreless over the final two-and-a-half minutes of the first half, and Sydney Parrish buried a wide open three to send Oregon into the locker room with a one-point lead over the nation’s No. 1 ranked team.

Boley and Sabally got the Ducks going again out of halftime with a bucket apiece, but Stanford scored six straight to move ahead, 40-37. A jumper by Sabally and a triple by Paopao put Oregon back in front midway through the third, but Stanford responded again, this time with a 9-0 run. After baskets by Mikesell and Angela Dugalic cut Oregon’s deficit to four, the Cardinal went on another 9-0 run to take a 13-point lead into the fourth quarter.
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Stanford opened the final period with a pair of baskets to push its lead to 17, but those were the only two field goals in the quarter for the Cardinal as Oregon ramped up its defensive intensity. Parrish single-handily put together an 8-0 run that cut the deficit to nine, but unfortunately it would be three-and-half minutes before the Ducks’ next field goal.

Down nine with just over a minute to play, Mikesell converted a lay-in and Boley followed with a steal and a bucket to make it a five-point game. The Ducks came up with a steal out of a timeout and appeared to have a chance to make it a one-score game, but a traveling call gave the ball back to Stanford and the Cardinal hit free throws down the stretch to ice the game.

Who Stood Out: Parrish led the Ducks with 14 points, fueled by her 8-0 run in the fourth quarter. Paopao finished with 12 points, and Boley and Sabally each had 10. Sabally led Oregon with 11 rebounds for her third double-double of the season.

Notable: Oregon lost back-to-back games for the first time since February 2019 … Four Ducks scored in double digits; Oregon has had at least three double-figure scorers in every game this season … Oregon was without center Sedona Prince (injury) for the third straight game.

Up Next: Oregon will take on California in Berkeley at 1 p.m. PT on Sunday (Pac-12 Network).