October 14, 2014

With perhaps the Pac-12's deepest and most versatile lineup, Oregon is riding high after winning the regular-season title outright for the first time in 14 years.

The top-seeded Ducks, however, hope to take care of some unfinished business after last year's humbling defeat in the conference tournament championship game.

Eighth-ranked Oregon looks to take its first step toward that goal when it takes on youthful Washington in the quarterfinals in Las Vegas on Thursday.

Joseph Young led the Ducks to the Pac-12 tournament final a year ago before they were routed 80-52 by top-seeded Arizona. This season, the Ducks hope to complete the job behind a far more balanced attack.

Elgin Cook and Dillon Brooks were named to the all-Pac-12 first team for Oregon (25-6), while Chris Boucher earned honorable mention honors and Tyler Dorsey was selected to the all-freshman team.

Brooks leads the way with 16.7 points per game, Cook is second at 14.3 and Dorsey third with 13.2. Boucher, averaging 12.0 points and a team-best 7.5 rebounds, has blocked a school-record 98 shots and is second nationally with 3.16 per game.

"That's what's special about this team," Cook told the school's official website. "One day it could be me, one day it could be Dillon, or Chris, Tyler, Jordan (Bell). You just never know. Whoever has it rolling is who's going to shoot the ball."

Dorsey took his turn Saturday when he had 19 points and Cook added 17 and 12 rebounds in a 76-66 victory at Southern California that clinched the fifth regular-season outright crown in school history.

"We're happy with the championship, but we're not satisfied," forward Dwayne Benjamin said.

Cook had the hot hand when the Ducks faced Washington (18-13) less than two weeks ago. He finished with 26 points and seven rebounds in an 86-73 home win Feb. 28.

Brooks chipped in with 19 points, but he's looking to regroup after he ended up with a season-low three points on 1-of-6 shooting against the Trojans.

The Ducks hope to dominate inside after outscoring the Huskies 44-26 in the paint and outrebounding them 40-26 last month. Oregon, seeking a season high-tying sixth straight win, also shot 53.7 percent while holding Washington to a 39.3 mark.

That was part of a late stretch in which the Huskies averaged 75.3 points on 42.4 percent shooting while dropping six of seven. They seem to be playing with more confidence now, scoring 95.0 per game and shooting 47.0 percent in back-to-back wins.

Dejounte Murray had 25 points Wednesday, Marquese Chriss scored 18 with 10 rebounds and Andrew Andrews added 14 points, nine boards and nine assists as the Pac-12's youngest team shot 50.0 percent in a 91-68 first-round win over Stanford.

"Really good to see, with over half our team playing in the tournament for the first time, they looked like they'd been here before,'' coach Lorenzo Romar said.

Romar's eighth-seeded squad may have to win the tourney to get into the NCAA Tournament. It's likely to lean heavily on Andrews, the Pac-12's leading scorer at 21.0 per game.

Murray also has been on a roll, averaging 20.2 points on 54.1 percent shooting over his last five. He finished with 20 in the first matchup with Oregon, while Andrews had 21 and eight assists.

The Huskies have dropped six of eight versus the Ducks and 17 of their last 20 neutral-site games against ranked opponents.

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