EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Washington coach Lorenzo Romar knew his team was living on the edge every time Oregon’s Joseph Young had the ball in his hands Wednesday night.
Not even the Huskies’ best shooting game of the season was enough to overcome Young’s 32 points, the last two on a driving floater with 23.8 seconds left that gave Oregon a 78-74 victory against the Huskies.
“It took Joseph Young to explode in the second half for us not to win that game,” said Romar, whose team limited the senior to eight points last month in Washington’s victory in Seattle.
Young hit his season high for the third time as the Ducks (16-7, 6-4 Pac-12) started the second half of the conference schedule with their fourth win in five games since the road loss to the Huskies (14-8, 3-7).
Young surpassed 2,000 points in his four-year career, which started with 916 points after two seasons at Houston before he transferred to Oregon. Young, who now has 2,002 points, is the fifth active NCAA Division I player to reach that milestone.
He said he was unaware of it.
“I didn’t know,” Young said. “I wasn’t worried about it. The main focus is getting the win and celebrating with the team at the end.”
Elgin Cook, whose pick freed up Young for the game-winner, added 16 points for the Ducks.
Nigel Williams-Goss led the Huskies with 19 points, Andrew Andrews added 14 and Shawn Kemp Jr. had 12.
After Young’s basket, Jalil Abdul-Bassit and Jordan Bell forced Washington’s ninth turnover with 5.6 seconds left when Mike Anderson got caught in the air looking to pass.
Romar had called two timeouts to set up the play, but Oregon coach Dana Altman countered with two substitutions for more defensive quickness, and it paid off.
“We knew they were going to spread the floor way out and either drive or look for the 3,” Altman said, “So we went with a little quicker lineup.”
Washington lost despite shooting a season-high 56.6 percent from the field. Oregon was nearly as effective at 53.4 percent, and Young was 12 of 21 overall, 4 of 9 on 3-pointers.
The Huskies opened the second half with an 8-0 run against Oregon’s zone defense to take a 45-42 lead, and the teams traded scoring the rest of the way, with neither leading by more than four points.
Kemp tied the score for the last time at 74-74 on a driving layup with 1:04 left as Washington finished with a 46-32 advantage on points in the paint.
Altman called a timeout with 42.5 seconds to go to set up a play for Young to either shoot or find an open teammate. With the shot clock winding down, Young drove and hit the floater.
It was his second straight game-winner for Young, whose late 3 beat Arizona State last Friday.
Washington: The Huskies are now 0-3 without 7-foot center Robert Upshaw, who was suspended for the rest of the season by coach Lorenzo Romar for a violation of team rules. Upshaw’s 9.4 rebounds per game were missed against the Ducks, who finished with a 30-24 edge on the boards.
Oregon: The Ducks lead the Pac-12 in free-throw accuracy (75.4 percent) but came into the game dead last in attempts. They were 10 of 10 against the Huskies. Young leads the conference again from the line and is fourth nationally at 93.4 percent (71 of 76).
BELL GOES QUIET
For the first time in 23 games, the Ducks’ Jordan Bell didn’t record a blocked shot. The 6-foot-9 freshman holds Oregon’s season record with 71 blocks and is second in the Pac-12 with 3.2 per game.
Washington plays at Oregon State on Sunday.
Oregon hosts Washington State on Sunday.
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