Even though Cal (17-9, 9-5 PAC-12) had won the previous 11 match ups, Oregon entered Thursday’s game as heavy favorites at home in Eugene, Ore. The Ducks finally appeared to find the replacement solution for injured point guard Dominic Artis in Johnathon Loyd and Damyean Dotson, but the two combined for only nine points in the loss to Cal.
Only won member of the Ducks’ squad finished in double figures. Forward Arsalan Kazemi finished with 11 points and an astounding 18 rebounds, five of which were at the offensive end.
Crabbe finished with 12 points for the Golden Bears, but the Ducks seemed to lose the game more than Cal winning the game. Of 15 attempted three pointers Oregon made two, while only one long range bucket was cashed in by a starter. Loyd and Dotson combined for an 0-6 night from three. The two guards also had three turnovers a piece in the backcourt.
Overall, the Ducks (21-6, 10-4 PAC-12) had the better game. Oregon had fewer turnovers and personal fouls, while besting Cal in rebounds. The Ducks were horrendous from the field, however, shooting only 27.6 percent to Cal’s 40 percent.
Cal is by no means a bad team in the PAC-12 Conference. Oregon needed a strong win Thursday night to push themselves ahead of Arizona by one game in the conference standings. The Wildcats are now tied with Oregon atop the PAC-12 standings, and will assume sole control of the No. 1 seed with a win over Washington State on Feb. 23.
Oregon’s loss to Cal ends a three game winning streak in conference play which directly followed a three game skid in the early stages of Artis’ absence. With Stanford up next, the Ducks’ losing streak could very well increase to two games. The Cardinal beat Oregon by 14 points when the teams met on Jan. 30 in Palo Alto, Calif.
Whenever it seems like Oregon has the opportunity to pull away in the PAC-12 Conference, they squander the chance. Granted, the Ducks will finish with a high seed in the PAC-12 Conference tournament regardless of how the next five games shape out, but with match ups against Stanford and Colorado on the horizon, there’s no telling how far Oregon could fall before the fat lady starts singing.