Brink, No. 6 Stanford women beat Oregon, reach Pac-12 semis
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Cameron Brink had 22 points and 11 rebounds as No. 6 Stanford overcame a lot of early misses and beat Oregon 76-65 on Thursday in the Pac-12 tournament quarterfinals.
Stanford (28-4) made just three of 20 shots in the first quarter. Brink and the Cardinal found their rhythm after that and improved to 20-1 all-time in the conference tournament quarterfinals in front of an announced gathering of 4,245.
Brink posted her 14th double-double of the season and second-ever in the conference tournament. Hannah Jump added 13 points and Talana Lepolo had 10. Haley Jones scored eight points on 3-of-15 shooting but had a season-high eight assists and 13 rebounds.
“That was a great win for our team,” Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer said. “Oregon has a really strong team ... just a very well-coached team, really talented team. So for us, this is a big win. ... A lot of different people stepped up.”
The Cardinal held off a third-quarter rally by Oregon by using a 7-0 run to close the period.
Stanford dominated the glass, outrebounding the Ducks, 56-39. The Cardinal grabbed 21 offensive boards and turned them into 21 second-chance points.
“I think last time we played Oregon we gave them like 23 offensive rebounds and we lost the boards,” said Francesca Belibi, who had 10 rebounds for Stanford. “We kind of pride ourselves on being a defensive team and a rebounding team. So I think for all of us it was about boxing out, getting the boards, getting those extra possessions, and making sure they didn’t get any extra possessions.”
Te-Hina Paopao scored a career-high 28 points for the Ducks (17-14). Paopao’s seven 3-pointers tied for the second-most in a single tournament game. Endyia Rogers had 15. Oregon finished the game hitting a mere 29.4% (20 of 68) from the floor.
Stanford opened the game by taking an 11-2 lead thanks to going 7 for 7 from the foul line.
The Cardinal shot 9 of 17 from the floor in the second quarter. Brink had eight of Stanford’s 21 points in the period.
“Congratulations to Stanford, they deserved to win today,” Oregon coach Kelly Graves said. “They’re obviously one of the best basketball teams in the country. They’re going to be great representatives as they move on, not only in this tournament but in the NCAA Tournament. Certainly feel like they’re the kind of team that can win it all.”
The teams came in 2-2 against one another in the Pac-12 tournament. Now, having won three of the five times it’s faced the Ducks in the event, Stanford now has a winning tournament record against all other 11 teams.
Paopao and Rogers have the highest-scoring games of the tournament thus far, as Rogers scored 28 points against Washington in the opening round. Rogers finished with 43 points in two tournament games, while Paopao finished with 41. The tandem’s 84 points accounted for 71.7% of the Ducks’ 117 points in both games.
Oregon: The Ducks lost seven in a row before winning twice to close the regular season. That left them in a precarious position, needing to perform well in the conference tournament in order to get an invite to the NCAA field. The win over Washington in the opening round and the competitive second half against Stanford may have helped. Graves said if the Ducks don’t receive a bid, they would accept an NIT bid.
Stanford: The tandem of Brink and Jones continues to be a menace for opponents. Brink has scored in double figures in 23 of the last 24 games, while Jones has done the same in 18 of the last 24.
Oregon: Bubble team hoping to get an NCAA bid.
Stanford: Plays UCLA in a semifinal Friday.
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