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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

March 11, 2011 at 11:37 AM

E.J. Singler and Oregon are shining bright this week in LA

ej singler drives.JPG
Photo credit: Getty Images – Jeff Gross

Some things defy logic and reasonable explanation.
Take for instance the Oregon Ducks.
The arrived to Los Angeles riding a four-game losing streak. They were blown out at home in a pair of defeats to the Bay Area schools. They lost by 20 at Arizona State and were crushed at Arizona in the regular-season finale.
You’d think Oregon would give a good effort for 20-30 minutes in its Pac-10 Tournament opener before finding a way to lose against ASU, which had swept the season series.
But after a pair of wins, No. 7 seed Oregon is the most surprising team to advance to the conference semifinals.
The Ducks beat ASU 76-69 Wednesday at Staples Center before they played their best game in nearly a month and destroyed UCLA 76-59 last night.
The Bruins also swept Oregon in the regular season, but none of that mattered Thursday.
The Ducks were brilliant at times defensively. Despite being shorter and smaller, they used a zone that frustrated UCLA’s big front line. Bruins forward Reeves Nelson finished with just seven points while Joshua Smith had five. Nelson also drew a technical foul after protesting a non-call.
UCLA shot .250 (6-of-24) from the field in the first half as Oregon built a 38-24 lead. Teh Bruins never closed closer than 10 points and the Ducks led by as many as 22.
E.J. Singler (above, right) has been on a tear this week. He scored a career-high 22 points Tuesday. Against UCLA, he set another career best and poured in 24 points on 7-for-9 shooting. He connected on 8 for 8 free throws and 2 for 2 three-pointers. Singler also had seven rebounds and three steals.
Junior guard Malcolm Armstead added 13 points, six rebounds, five assists and two steals while Garrett Sim had 10 points.
Oregon (16-16) plays No. 3 Washington (21-10) 8:40 p.m. tonight. The teams split the regular-season series.
I had a chance to catch up with Armstead last night before the Huskies game. He had no preference on which team he wanted to play.
“At this time of the year it really doesn’t matter,” he said. “We’ve played both of these teams before. We’ve beaten them and we’ve lost to them. So we know them. And they know us.”
Armstead said he’s not s surprised Oregon has advanced to the semifinals.
“When we were winning (during the regular season) we knew we were capable of playing this way,” he said. “It was just a matter of staying focused.”

Comments | Topics: UCLA

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