Dons and Ducks do battle in non-league affair

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Updated: 11/24/2013 11:12 am

Eugene, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - On Sunday night, the Oregon Ducks will put their No. 17 national ranking on the line against the San Francisco Dons in a non-conference clash at Matthew Knight Arena.

In their last outing, the Dons were able to escape with a 75-74 victory on the road at Montana. The win put the Dons back in the win column after they had lost their previous two contests. Up next for the Dons is a contest with a team from outside the Division I ranks as they host Sonoma State on Wednesday.

Oregon earned its third win in as many games on Tuesday with a 69-54 triumph over Utah Valley. The win was added to the collection for the Ducks, who have also topped Georgetown (82-75) and Western Carolina (107-83). Oregon will host the Global Sports Hardwood Challenge next weekend with Pacific, North Dakota and Cal Poly coming to town for the round-robin style event.

During the last meeting between these teams Oregon ran away with a 110-79 victory early in the 2007-08 season. The win was the seventh in nine total meetings for Oregon.

All six of the lead changes in the game came in the second half in San Francisco's showdown with Montana. The final one came when Mark Tollefsen knocked down a 3-pointer with 2:48 to play break a 64-64 tie. The Dons were able to hold on from there despite missing seven free throws in the final two minutes.

The Dons' ability to score is apparent. San Francisco is averaging 88.2 points per game and netting a shade above 50 percent from the field. The Dons are also a strong shooting team from beyond the arc, with 40 percent of their attempts from 3-point distance finding the bottom of the net. Tollefsen (15.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg) is a strong shooter from beyond the arc as well as one of the more reliable frontcourt performers on the roster. Kruize Pinkins (14.0 ppg) is the second leading scorer on the roster despite playing less than 20 minutes per game off the bench. Pinkins had 22 points on 10-of-11 shooting as a reserve against Montana. Cody Doolin (13.0 ppg, 7.0 apg) is just as happy to shoot as he is to find open looks for his teammates. Cole Dickerson (12.2 ppg, 9.2 rpg) is a threat for a double-double every time out.

It took a half for the Ducks to find their offensive rhythm against Utah Valley. Although they hit five shots from beyond the arc in the first 20 minutes, the Ducks shot at just a 36.4 percent clip and led by four points at the break. Oregon pulled away in the second half by improving to 46.7 percent shooting.

Normally the Ducks have very little issue filling it up. Oregon is netting 86 points per game over the first four contests, while connecting on 48.4 percent from the floor. Leading the way for the Ducks is Joseph Young. The Houston- transfer is netting 26.7 points per game on 57.9 percent shooting. Young has had at least 20 points in all three games including a career-high 36 points against Western Carolina. Fellow transfer Mike Moser, who came over from UNLV, is also putting together a strong season with an average of 16.3 points and 7.0 rebounds per game. Johnathan Loyd (10.0 ppg, 5.0 apg) is the only other double-figure scorer on the roster, while Jason Calliste (8.7 ppg) is providing solid play in the backcourt off the bench.

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