No. 12 Oregon beats Morgan State 97-76CHRIS HANSEN (Associated Press) Sunday, Dec 29, 2013
EUGENE, Ore. (AP)—Oregon coach Dana Altman said there probably isn't a team in the country satisfied with how it's playing right now and his is no different.
The 12th-ranked Ducks just look better doing it than most.
Joseph Young scored 24 points and Oregon continued its best start in eight seasons with a 97-76 victory over Morgan State on Sunday.
Richard Amardi had a season-high 16 points in his first start of the season, and Damyean Dotson scored 15 points for the Ducks (12-0), who are off to their best start since going 13-0 in 2006-07.
Oregon opens Pac-12 Conference play on Thursday at Utah and Altman said there are many areas the Ducks need to improve.
''We've got a lot of work to do,'' Altman said, a sentiment echoed by Young and Jalil Abdul-Bassit, the two players made available to the media after the game.
''I didn't think we did too good,'' Young said. ''We didn't take a step like we needed too.''
And yet, it was plenty good enough for a 21-point win.
It had been eight days since Oregon defeated BYU in overtime and the Ducks looked more rested than rusty after the long layoff.
Oregon, the national scoring leader coming in, increased its average to 90.8 points per game and were a 3-pointer from a school-record fifth 100-point game this season.
The Ducks got there with a balanced and efficient scoring attack. Six players scored seven or more points and Oregon shot 54 percent from the field overall, 7 for 15 from 3-point range and 22 for 26 from the free throw line.
Young, who had three 3-pointers, was 9 for 13 from the field and Amardi made all but one of his nine shots.
''They're good. They're really good,'' Morgan State coach Todd Bozeman said. ''There's a reason why they're undefeated. Dana does a good job with them guys and they keep coming at you. They can sub in five guys and there's not that big a drop off.''
Justin Black scored 22 points for the Bears (3-9), and Anthony Hubbard added 15 and Ian Chiles had 13 points and tied the Matthew Knight Arena record with five blocks.
The Ducks led 54-30 at halftime behind 17 points from Young and 12 from Amardi.
Oregon used a 16-1 run to lead 16-5 4 minutes into the game.
The Ducks put the game out of reach with one last surge in the first half, outscoring the Bears 20-6 over the final 5:30 to turn a 10-point lead into the 24-point halftime advantage.
Morgan State made the first two baskets of the game but went just 6 for 22 the rest of the half. The Bears made just one field goal after a jumper by Black made it 34-24 with 6:40 to play.
The second half opened with layups by Johnathan Loyd and Dotson as the Ducks extended their lead to 58-30. They led by as many as 30 points.
But the Ducks were outscored 46-43 and committed 13 of their 18 turnovers in the second half. They sent the Bears to the free throw line 35 times and despite outrebounding them 42-26, Oregon gave up 14 second-chance points.
''Everybody can score on this team,'' said Abdul-Bassit, who had a career-high nine points. ''Anybody can go for 20 every night, but we really need to focus on our defense and stopping other teams.''