March 21, 2023
Ducks advance to NIT second round with 84-58 rout of UC Irvine

Ducks advance to NIT second round with 84-58 rout of UC Irvine

The odds were stacked against them before the game, with the Oregon Ducks having to play the first game of the NIT without three starters: Will Richardson, N’Faly Dante, and Jermaine Couisnard.

On top of that, they were playing UC Irvine, a team that gave them one of their worst losses of the season in December. After missing the NCAA Tournament, with so much going against them, it would have been easy for the Ducks to go flat and not work hard to advance. Instead, they easily dispatched the Anteaters at Matthew Knight Arena.

It was an opportunity for some guys further down the depth chart to get a good run and show what they’re capable of. Guys like Rivaldo Soares and Tyrone Williams turned up, posting the first double-doubles of their careers with the Ducks, and some late-game heroics from Nate Bittle brought the house down.

In the end, it led to a huge win and led the Ducks to the second round of the NIT. This is how it all happened.

Final score: Oregon Ducks 84, UC Irvine 58

Oregon head coach Dana Altman reacts during the first half as the Oregon Ducks face UC Irvine in their first NIT game on Wednesday, March 15, 2023 at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Oregon.
Ncaa Basketball Oregon Men’s Basketball Nit Opener UC Irvine in Oregon

game keys

  • The Ducks got off to a good offensive start, with Rivaldo Soares and Keeshawn Barthelemy knocking down 3-pointers in the opening minutes.

  • Eventually, Oregon’s lack of starting caliber players caught up with them, and UCI was able to get back in the game and pull out a 16-14 lead in Oregon with less than 10 minutes to go. Over the next minute, the Ducks went on a quick 10-0 run that put them up by 12.

  • The Ducks held a solid lead for most of the half, going into halftime 35-22. They were helped by the fact that UCI was about as cold as can be imagined from the floor, shooting just 9-for-45 (20%) FG and 1-for-12 (8%) from 3FG.

  • UC Irvine started to come on a bit in the second half and was able to cut the lead to single digits a couple of times. However, the Ducks continued to receive strong play from Rivaldo Soares and Keeshawn Barthelemy down the stretch.

  • It was Tyrone Williams and Soares who made the most of the increased playing time, both clinching their first career doubles in Oregon. The Ducks eventually built a 22-point lead late in the second half.

game players

  • Rivaldo Soares: 21 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists

  • Tyrone Williams: 12 points, 11 rebounds

  • Nate Bittle: 17 points, 3 rebounds

Whats Next?

The Ducks will now move on to the second round of the NIT, where they will host the University of Central Florida Knights.

The story originally appeared on Ducks Wire

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