The Arizona men’s basketball team continued to look sluggish in an 87-68 loss to the University of Oregon.
There was hope that the Wildcats would continue to ride the momentum that was established in Thursday night's game against Oregon State University, but the Wildcats looked out of sync once again, similar to how they played last weekend against the Washington schools.
Oregon center N’Faly Dante caused mayhem on the Wildcat frontcourt. Oumar Ballo was exposed in drop coverage throughout the afternoon. Dante was active above the rim, converting on many lobs, while convincingly winning the battle on the glass. Dante finished with 22 points and 10 rebounds.
Furthermore, the Wildcats had no answer for Oregon guard Jermaine Couisnard. The University of South Carolina transfer was continuously left with open looks, converting on six 3-pointers leading the Ducks in scoring with 27 points.
The only bright side for the Wildcats was the production from Kylan Boswell. The freshman guard had 15 points and was the only type of bench production head coach Tommy Lloyd saw. Unfortunately, the rest of the reserves continue to put the Wildcats in difficult positions to win games.
Senior guard Cedric Henderson was supposed to fill a significant void this off-season, but he lacks the ability to create space and get shots off, not helping give positive minutes in his time on the floor.
Pelle Larsson and Kerr Kriisa’s rollercoaster season continues. Larsson, someone who the coaching staff thought was poised for a breakout season, has brought minimal production over the past five games, putting the Wildcat offense to a halt.
Unfortunately, Wildcat fans did not see any more positives from Kriisa as he was 2/10 from the field, adding three turnovers, an area that has been a problem in his three years with the program. In his junior year, the Estonian native is witnessing a career-high turnover rate of three per game.
A repetitive theme when trailing; the Wildcats have difficulty playing behind. Over the past few games, Arizona has gotten into bad habits, hoisting 3-pointers and playing above speed in their half-court offense.
The Wildcats had numerous open-court turnovers, leading to 19 points out of the Ducks 87 total. The 14 second-chance points were crucial in the loss as the Wildcats were minus 10 in the rebounding battle, an area that usually is friendly to Arizona.
Ultimately, there may be room to panic. Arizona continues to struggle against mediocre opponents. Next week will not be any easier as two top teams in the Pac-12 conference will travel to McKale Center and face the Wildcats.
Arizona’s next game will be Thursday evening against the University of Southern California.
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