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Recap: Threes fall for No. 3 Oregon in blowout of South Dakota State

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The Oregon Ducks had four players make at least two 3-pointers and all four shot over 50 percent from beyond the arc. The South Dakota State Jackrabbits were not able to keep up with the offensive outburst.

NCAA BASKETBALL: APR 05 Div I Women’s Championship - Final Four - Oregon v Baylor
Erin Boley’s four 3-point makes all came in the first half.
Photo by Mary Holt/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The No. 3 Oregon Ducks (7-1) got back to their dominant ways with a 95-56 win over the South Dakota State Jackrabbits (6-4) on Sunday in Eugene, Ore.

In the Ducks’ previous contest, they lost to then-No. 8 Louisville and dropped from No. 1 in the AP Poll to No. 3. The Ducks’ “big three” of Sabrina Ionescu, Ruthy Hebard and Satou Sabally wasn’t about to let the team drop a second game in a row, not when Oregon came into this season with the unfinished business of not winning a national title last year.

That trio stepped up, Hebard scoring a game-high 22 points, Sabally contributing 16 points (including 2-for-2 shooting from distance) and seven rebounds and Ionescu adding 12 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds. Fellow starter Erin Boley added 12 points as well and freshman Holly Winterburn broke out with a career-high 17 points, as the Ducks cruised to a blowout victory. Winterburn was 5-of-7 from beyond the arc and Boley was 4-of-7 from 3-point range.

After taking 35 threes against Louisville and making just six of them, Oregon made getting the ball to Hebard down low an emphasis in the first quarter. The senior scored four points in the first minute and 25 seconds of the game. Boley led all Ducks scorers at halftime with 12 points, while Sabally and Winterburn combined for 24 points in the second half. Those three gave the Ducks a much improved 14-of-24 effort from long range.

Ionescu, meanwhile, was a steady, positive influence throughout the game; she scored seven points in the first half and five in the second. As has been the theme for her this season, she put distributing the ball first, above getting her own shot off. But Ionescu’s last two seasons of averaging 19-plus points per game were with her in spirit as she recorded her 109th career double-digit scoring performance and made her 284th and 285th 3-pointers as a Duck. She now holds the Oregon program record in those two categories.

The Jackrabbits were led by Tylee Irwin, who scored 10 points in defeat. South Dakota State lost to Oregon in the Sweet Sixteen last year. With a lot of talent lost from a season ago, the Jackrabbits failed to avenge that loss or even come close. Rylie Cascio Jensen and Paiton Burckhard, the team’s leading scorer entering the game, each had eight points.