Number 3 of Oregon beat Sunday number 11 Stanford 88-48, leaving Cardinal Tara VanDerveer the worst defeat of his coaching career and clinching the Ducks' first win at the Maples Pavilion since 1987.
STANFORD, Calif. – The Maples Pavilion, a Sunday afternoon, is not the most hostile environment on the map. The group goes out in front of the Steve Miller Band, the girls sit politely with their parents and their pom-poms, and the local crowd occasionally applauds Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu, probably because She has never done anything feminine basketball player.
But for more than three decades, since 1987, Oregon women have not been able to win a match at Stanford. That changed drastically on Sunday, when the # 3 Ducks flattened the 11th ranked cardinal in the world and won their 16th straight game.
None of Oregon's players was alive, obviously, the last time the program won a game at Stanford. At the time, Tara VanDerveer, the Cardinal's longtime coach, was barely making her 1,000 career victories. Sunday, Oregon inflicted the worst loss of his career.
Ionescu, who totaled 54 points during a weekend at his home in the San Francisco Bay Area, did not appear to be of any historical significance. Ducks coach Kelly Graves, whose team held Stanford star striker, Alanna Smith, to six points in three shots on 14. Smith averaged more than 20 points per game. match.
"I've been telling everyone all week:" This team has never lost to Stanford, "said Graves." What they did in the years leading up to the birth of these children … we do not care. We do not talk about it. We're talking about the game. And we did not even talk about this game until yesterday. "
Oregon, who had just won a 105-82 win late at night at Cal Friday, staged a mild Saturday night shootaround so unobtrusive that Graves played a central role in the scouting team. But he challenged the Ducks mentally, and the results were a complete defensive blitz that forced the cardinal to miss out on 41 of his 60 shots. Many of these misfires were point blank in the first half, while Oregon used a 15-0 run to move to halftime at 44-20.
"At the beginning of the match, we had a great appearance and did not finish the basket," said VanDerveer. "As he escaped, we did a little early race and then a train ran down the tracks very quickly."
There has been a lot of impressive performances in college basketball this year, but @OregonWBB The combined domination of both sides of the ground is the best I've seen in the entire season. #FearTheDuck
– Rebecca Lobo (@RebeccaLobo) February 10, 2019
Oregon, which has one of the most prolific offenses in the country, had four players in double digits and was watching striker Erin Boley who scored a perfect score of 4 against 4 to 3. But like so many days, Ionescu has everything implemented for the Ducks (23-1 in total, 12-0 Pac-12). She hit 12 of the 20 players on the field and almost finished her triple-double record in the NCAA career with 27 points, nine rebounds and eight assists.
Later, some of the local media that covered her during her days at Miramonte High School across Orinda Bay in California asked Ionescu the question posed by many WNBA coaches: will she declare for the repechage after the season? A journalist asked him to rate his chances on a scale of 1 to 10, and Ionescu had none.
She said that she was focusing on this season and that she was doing something special with the Ducks. Sunday, everything seemed possible.
"I know it's a politically correct answer," she said as she stood up. "But sorry."
VanDerveer also has high hopes. She said that towards the end of last winter, Notre Dame had been shaken by a 33-point loss to Louisville. The Irish Fighting ended up winning the national championship a few months later.
"I do not think it's good to throw someone under the bus," VanDerveer said. "It's a game, and [Oregon] is very talented.
"Our team is resilient, I think they'll take it personally."