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Warriors aiming for road upset at No. 13 Oregon

The list of upset victories over ranked opponents on the road for the University of Hawai’i basketball team is a short one. There was the historic NCAA Tournament win over California in 2016 at Spokane, Wash. Then you have to go back to 2004, when the Rainbow Warriors knocked off No. 25 Utah State in the first round of the NIT at Logan, Utah.

The Warriors are aiming to add to that list on Saturday, when they play No. 13 Oregon at the Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Ore. The game is scheduled to start at 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time (2:00 p.m. Hawai’i Time) and will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

Both teams have 6-2 records, though they have taken different paths.

Hawai’i’s most significant wins this season have come against San Francisco and Pacific. The Warriors last played a ranked opponent in December of 2017, when No. 6 Miami beat Hawai’i, 75-57, in the Diamond Head Classic.

Meanwhile, the Ducks have already played four ranked opponents this season, compiling a 2-2 record in those games. They beat then-No. 13 Memphis and then-No. 13 Seton Hall in November.

However, Oregon has not played since back-to-back close losses to No. 8 Gonzaga (73-72) and No. 6 North Carolina (78-74) on November 28 and 29 at the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament in the Bahamas.

Oregon is 4-0 at home this season, and have won nine consecutive home games dating to last season.

The Ducks are led by All-America candidate Payton Pritchard, a 6-2 senior point guard. He is averaging 18.6 points, 5.5 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game. Pritchard, who is from West Linn, Ore., has been a starter since his freshman season, when the Ducks advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 2017.

Pritchard and Francis Okoro are returning starters from last season’s Oregon team that finished 25-13 and advanced to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16. The Ducks were picked to finish first in the Pac-12 Conference Preseason Poll  prior to this season.

Okoro, a 6-9 sophomore forward/center, is averaging 5.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game. The other Oregon starters are 6-6 junior Chris Duarte (11.0 points, 5.6 rebounds per game), 6-4 senior Anthony Mathis (transfer from New Mexico, 10.8 points per game,  team-high 21 3-pointers, .488 3-point percentage), and 6-7 senior Juiston Shakur (transfer from UNLV, 8.8 points, 6.5 rebounds per game).

Hawai’i is on a three-game winning streak, with all three wins coming at home. In their only previous road game this season, the Warriors lost at Illinois, 66-53, on November 18.

The Warriors are led by the backcourt duo of Eddie Stansberry and Drew Buggs. Stansberry, a 6-3 senior, is averaging 18.8 points per game, and leads the team with 26 3-pointers and a .441 percentage from 3-point range. Buggs, a 6-3 junior, is averaging 12.3 points, 5.1 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game.

Samuta Avea, a 6-6 junior forward, is contributing 11.6 points and 4.0 rebounds per game; Zigmars Raimo, a 6-9 senior forward, is averaging 10.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game; Dawson Carper, a 7-foot sophomore center, is averaging 6.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game, and has a .688 field goal percentage.

Acting head coach Chris Gerlufsen will once again lead the Warriors in place of head coach Eran Ganot, who remains on an indefinite medical leave of absence.

Oregon is led by Dana Altman, who has a 241-98 record in his 10th season as head coach of the Ducks. He was previously a head coach at Creighton, Kansas State and Marshall, and has an overall career record of 651-341.

HAWAI’I (6-2, 0-0 Big West) at OREGON (6-2, 0-0 Pac-12)
When:
Saturday, December 7, 4:00 p.m. PT (2:00 p.m. Hawai’i)
Where: Matthew Knight Arena (12,634) – Eugene, Ore.
Television: Pac-12 Network.
Streaming Video: Pac-12.com/live and Pac-12 Now App
Radio: CBS Sports Honolulu (1500 AM)
Audio Webcast: cbssportshawaii.com/Sideline Hawai’i App.
Live Stats: StatBroadcast.com

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