Two of the Pac-12’s best teams in the conference were on full display on a Friday afternoon in Santa Cruz, California.
Led by two of the nation’s best coaches - Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer (who recently passed the great Pat Summitt as the winningest head coach in Division I women’s basketball) and Oregon’s Kelly Graves - this was a battle from start to finish.
If you look back at the past four seasons of Pac-12 women’s hoops, there are two teams that have either been named the outright conference champion or won the Pac-12 tournament title: Oregon and Stanford.
No. 11 Oregon was looking for a huge upset on the road but unfortunately, after a hard-fought game, came up short. The Ducks (8-2, 6-2 Pac-12 play) dropped their second loss in a row and fall to the No. 1 Stanford Cardinal who remain undefeated.
FINAL SCORE: Oregon 63, Stanford 70.
Oregon’s depth and youth was on full display against the Stanford. Graves went deep into his bench early and often and had 11 different players see time in the first quarter alone.
Freshman Sydney Parrish finished with a career-high 14 points in the loss.
In the first half, the Ducks fought and won a majority of the 50-50 balls, the battle of the boards, second-chance points, everything that keeps the energy up and challenges the No. 1 team in the country.
That’s two losses in a row for the Ducks this season.
After taking a 33-32 lead at halftime, the Cardinal came out on fire in the third quarter dropping 28 points to take a 60-47 lead after three quarters of play. Erin Boley committed her fourth foul in the third quarter.
Also, Sedona Prince was unavailable for this game due to a lingering ankle injury. This past week, head coach Kelly Graves joined host Jordan Kent on the latest Talkin’ Ducks to give an update on Prince and when Duck fans can expect her to return to the court.
“Sedona is still day-to-day, week-to-week kind of process. We’re gonna get her back here soon, but when, I don’t know. We sure need her because she brings something so unique to our team and it’s a matchup advantage for us every game,” said Graves.
Hopefully next weekend she’ll be ready to go with another road trip to the desert against the Arizona schools.
Freshman Maddie Scherr hit a three-pointer as time expired in the first quarter as the Ducks took a 20-14 lead over the nation’s No. 1 team.
No points in the second quarter from Erin Boley, Nyara Sabally or Te-Hina Paopao and the Ducks still managed a one-point lead over Stanford at halftime. That’s incredible. It shows the depth this team has and that anyone can get hot in any given game.
Postgame quotes from head coach Kelly Graves will be updated when made available.
The Next Game
The Ducks will stay in the Bay Area to face the Cal Bears (0-9, 0-6 Pac-12) on Sunday, tip-off at 1 p.m. (PT) in Berkeley, California.