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BC-BKW--NCAA- South Dakota St-Oregon

March 30, 2019
AP Sports Writer

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Ruthy Hebard had 24 points and 14 rebounds, and Sabrina Ionescu added 17 points and 11 assists to send second-seeded Oregon to its third straight Elite Eight with a 63-53 victory over No. 6 South Dakota State on Friday night.

Ionescu added seven rebounds to fall just short of a triple-double for the Ducks (32-4). On Sunday, Oregon will face top seed Mississippi State (33-2), which beat Arizona State 76-53 in the earlier game.

Oregon was spurred on by a huge contingent of its fans as attendance at the Moda Center was announced at 11,324.

Macy Miller had 21 points for South Dakota State (28-7), which had advanced to the round of 16 for the first time in school history. The loss snapped an 18-game winning streak for the Jackrabbits.

Satou Sabally finished with 14 points and the Ducks led by as many as 19 points in the third quarter.

Ionescu, the Pac-12 Player of the Year, was averaging 19.7 points, 8.2 assists and 7.5 rebounds going into the game. The junior guard had her 18th career triple-double, an ongoing NCAA record, in the Ducks’ 91-68 second-round victory Sunday over Indiana, finishing with 29 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.

Oregon easily dispatched No. 15 seed Portland State 78-40 in its first-round game.

SDSU was making its ninth tournament appearance in the past 11 years. To reach the Sweet 16 the Jackrabbits beat 11th seed Quinnipiac 76-65 then upset No. 3 Syracuse 75-64.

Both teams ranked among the nation’s best offenses. Oregon went into the game averaging 86 points per game (third), while the Jackrabbits were averaging 80 (12th). The Ducks averaged 51 percent shooting from the floor, while SDSU averaged 48.

Oregon’s trio of Ionescu, Hebard and Sabally proved too much for the Jackrabbits on Friday night.

South Dakota State took an early 12-8 lead on Madison Guebert’s 3-pointer. But the Ducks came back to tie it at 12 on the first of Ionescu’s four consecutive jumpers.

The fourth gave the Ducks an 18-12 lead at the end of the opening quarter. Sabally’s 3-pointer pushed Oregon’s lead to 29-19 and she had 11 points to lead all players at the break. Oregon led 31-22.

Hebard had 17 points and 12 rebounds by the end of the third quarter for her 14th double-double of the season.

BIG PICTURE

South Dakota State: The Jackrabbits hosted the Ducks earlier this season on Dec. 12. Oregon won 87-79. ... No other Summit League team has reached the round of 16.

Oregon: Reserve guard Taylor Chavez was a game-time decision after missing the last seven games with a foot injury. While she warmed up with the team, she did not play.

FAMILIAR FOES: Oregon has faced all three of the teams at the Portland Regional this season. In addition to the Ducks’ visit to Brookings in December, they beat Mississippi State 82-74 in Las Vegas, before twice defeating Pac-12 foe Arizona State (77-71 at home on Jan. 18, and 66-59 on March 3 in Tempe) during the conference season.

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