ASU men’s basketball had a clear path to a top-four seed in the upcoming Pac-12 tournament. But despite an opportunity to knock off its toughest remaining opponent, the Sun Devils were unable to shoot their way out of a 75-68 loss to the Oregon Ducks.
Even with senior guard Shannon Evans dropping 25 points in Eugene, ASU shot an abysmal 28.6 percent (8 of 28 from the field) in the second half. That said, Evans was not the only Sun Devil keeping the maroon and gold in contention for a win. Freshman guard Remy Martin piled on 15 points of his own.
While points floated in by the boatloads for the two guards, there was one member of Guard U who didn’t get a bucket to fall the entire night – senior guard Tra Holder.
It is the first time Holder has been held scoreless since Feb. 25, 2016.
The senior’s scoring absence didn’t seem to matter in the first half when the Sun Devils ran out to a seven-point lead with a little over 12 minutes left till the break.
Nevertheless, ASU served the Ducks a recipe for success on a silver platter.
Once again, the Sun Devils’ two defensive bugaboos – second-chance points and offensive rebounds – reared their ugly heads.
In the first meeting between ASU and UO, the Ducks tallied seven more offensive boards than the Sun Devils. Part two of the season series was no different as UO outhustled its opponent on the offensive glass by yet again, seven rebounds.
After securing rebound after rebound, the Ducks had little trouble taking advantage of their extra scoring opportunities.
Of UO’s 75 points, 21 percent came on second-chance opportunities.
A plethora of additional chances allowed for two of the Ducks’ most efficient weapons to take over – and they did just that.
McIntosh is no stranger to eyebrow-raising performances against the Sun Devils. In the first meeting of the season, McIntosh left Tempe with 12 points and 13 boards.
Once winners of three-straight games, ASU has dropped its last two.
With the Oregon State Beavers on deck, the Sun Devils are desperate for a victory to keep hopes of a top-four seed in the conference tournament alive.
However, it’s no easy task as ASU barely snuck out a two-point win over the Beavers on Jan. 13.