The Arizona Wildcats went into Saturday’s afternoon tilt in Eugene, Ore., not necessarily needing a win, but they came out playing like they did against Oregon — at least until roughly five minutes left in the game.
Aaron Gordon made one of two free throws to put Arizona up 51-50 on the Ducks with 4:43 to go. Oregon took over from there, and raced to a 64-57 finish, the Wildcats’ third loss of the year. Arizona has already clinched the Pac-12 Conference regular-season title, but Oregon moved into the seventh spot with the win.
Here’s a look at Saturday’s contest by the numbers:
Sophomore guard Gabe York started the game and failed to register a point, going 0-for-3 from the field. It was the first time he hadn’t scored in six contests, and only the third time it’s happened all season.
Arizona had just three players reach double-figures in the contest, as did the Ducks. Point guard T.J. McConnell narrowly missed the mark, scoring nine on 4-of-7 shooting.
Even though Sean Miller could have given the Wildcats’ bench some extended run in the game, only four reserves saw time against the Ducks, and the second unit scored a total of four points. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson made one bucket, and freshman Elliott Pitts made his lone field goal attempt. The Ducks’ bench, meanwhile, put up 26 points.
The Ducks picked up their 10th conference win of the season — to go along with eight losses. The victory puts them in good position to earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament, and they currently are fifth in the Pac-12.
The Wildcats were anemic from long range Saturday, making just 2-of-11 attempts from downtown. McConnell and Nick Johnson were the only Arizona players to hit a 3-pointer. Oregon, however, was sizzling from behind the arc, converting 10-of-19 tries. Reserve guard Jason Calliste led the team with 18 points and made 4-of-5 from downtown.
Aaron Gordon had a solid outing for the Wildcats, scoring 21 points on 7-of-17 shooting and adding eight rebounds and three assists. Arizona is now 2-1 when Gordon reaches the 20-point mark.
Rebounds were even in the game 35-35. The Ducks grabbed one more offensive rebound than the Wildcats did (10-9).
Free throw shooting was again a problem for Arizona, as the team finished 11-for-19 from the line. If it weren’t for Gordon, a 46.3 percent free-throw shooter on the season, doing better than usual in the contest (7-for-12), the Wildcats’ efficiency from the line would have been much worse. Oregon was barely any better from the charity stripe, making 12-of-19 tosses (63.2).