PORTLAND, OR (WLBT) - An extremely hard fought game for the Bulldogs came down to the wire. It was the open three-point shots for Oregon that helped the Ducks pull away in the fourth quarter.
Oregon clearly came in with a game plan designed to limit Teaira McCowan. The Ducks had T in double, sometimes triple coverage. WLBT’s Rachel Richlinski asked the senior just how frustrating it was to play with the Ducks all over her. With her final game behind her, T didn’t hold back with her answer.
“It’s very annoying,” McCowan said. “I try to speak and get them off me as much as I can, but you really can’t do anything because they let it go on for a whole season. People think it’s acceptable, but it’s really not acceptable. You just have to fight through it.”
All four starting seniors finished with double digits. The Ducks held T to just five points in December, but she was able to get her 31st double-double of the season with 19 points and 15 rebounds. Anriel Howard followed close behind with 18 points while Jazzmun Holmes had 15 and Jordan Danberry had 12.
Oregon’s Sabrina Ionescu had a game-high 31 points and made five three-pointers.
“We knew that they were going to shoot threes,” Holmes said. “We just tried to contain them as much as we could. They made some big shots.”
The Bulldogs were just one win away from a third consecutive trip to a Final Four.
“We’ve been close three years in a row,” Danberry said. “Two years for me. It’s real frustrating to not make it to the Final Four.”
MSU sophomores Bre’Amber Scott and Andra Espinoa-Hunter both had big minutes against the Ducks. Scott finished with eight points and Hunter had 12. Coach Schaefer said that gives him hope for the future.
“I don’t plan on going anywhere other than continuing to win at the highest level and competing for championships,” Schaefer said. “I think that’s where our focus is at Mississippi State.”
The Bulldogs finished with an overall record of 33-3.