A grueling start on the road against a ranked opponent never had the upset feel for No. 19 Arizona State (16-8, 6-6), as they lost to No. 3 Oregon (22-2, 11-1) 79-48 on Sunday.
In the team’s first matchup in Tempe, ASU upset the Ducks by way of a strong performance in the second half. This time, the team had no answer.
It took over four minutes before either team scored and freshman Eboni Walker registered the first bucket for ASU.
The game had the looks to be another down to the wire performance between two top-25 teams at the beginning. However, as the game wore on, Oregon wasn’t having any of it. They used a 10-0 run to give themselves breathing room heading into the second quarter up 10-2.
Neither team shot well in the first half as things were physical and turnovers were coming in bunches for both teams. At halftime, the Sun Devils kept pace with the high-flying Ducks, down 27-15. It was still a deficit, but ASU was in reach.
Nevertheless, Oregon showcased why its team is dangerous throughout the whole season with 52 second half points. The Ducks entered the game averaging 83.8 points per game since their lone conference loss to ASU.
Senior guard Sabrina Ionescu led the game in scoring with 19 points, as well as adding seven rebounds and five assists. Ionescu had to turn to scoring early in the first half when her teammates shots weren’t falling.
ASU found ways to get its offense going in the second half against the Oregon’s 2-3 zone. However, it was too little, too late for the Sun Devils as they were playing catchup the rest of the way.
Not only were shots not falling for the Sun Devils (17-43, 4-13 from 3-point), but they turned the ball over 18 times, giving Oregon 19 points off turnovers and increasing their lead.
Walker and Senior forward Ja’Tavia Tapley led ASU in scoring with eight points. Both showed glimpses late, but the score was already lopsided.
As mentioned earlier, the game was a little chippy as the third quarter alone saw three technicals handed out. Oregon’s bench received one, and Ionescu and Robbi Ryan both received techs with one minute to go in the quarter.
ASU will look to snap its three-game losing streak on Valentine’s Day when the Washington State Cougars (11-13, 4-8) head into desert Financial Arena.
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