Oregon Women's Basketball 2018 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Oregon Ducks

Pac-12 (30-4, 16-2)

Oregon went into the 2017-18 season with a bigger target on its back after making a run to the Elite Eight last season. The Ducks have stepped up to the challenge of not being able to sneak up on anyone by winning the Pac-12 regular season title. Head Coach Kelly Graves has steadily built up this program to a national power in short order and they play an exciting style that has staying power for years to come.
Big Wins: 11/16 at Texas A&M (83-68), 1/7 at UCLA (70-61), 2/23 at Arizona State (57-44)
Bad Losses: 11/19 at Louisville (61-74), 1/19 at Oregon State (79-85), 2/4 Stanford (65-78)
Coach: Kelly Graves
Why They Can Surprise:
Sabrina Ionescu is one of those players that can take over a game on all fronts like a Sue Bird, Diana Taurasi or a Candace Parker when they were in college. Ionescu is averaging 19.4 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 7.8 assists per game on the season. Ruthy Hebard is a very dominant offensive player down in the paint and very rarely misses a shot at times as Hebard is shooting 65.9 percent from the floor this season. Lexi Bando provides excellent senior leadership that will help the Ducks when they get into the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament. Satou Sabally and Maite Carzola provide that necessary scoring depth that will keep opposing defenses off balance as they have combined to average 22.0 points per game between the two of them. The experience from last season’s run to the Elite Eight is another reason why they can surprise as the environment will not be too big for Oregon.
Why They Can Disappoint:
It is going to take a tremendous effort by someone to beat the Ducks in the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. A team that has great guard play like UCLA with a Jordin Canada, Mississippi State with Victoria Vivians or a team with great athletes and depth like UConn can be a problem for Oregon. The Ducks played in Starkville earlier this season and lost to the Bulldogs 90-79 as they could not slow down Teaira McCowan in the post. She scored 21 points and collected ten rebounds against Oregon. Thus, defense is going to be critical for the Ducks for them to avoid an earlier than expected exit in the NCAA Tournament.
Probable Starters:
Sabrina Ionescu, Sophomore, Guard, 19.4 ppg, 7.8 apg, 6.6 rpg
Maite Cazorla, Junior, Guard, 11.1 ppg, 5.0 apg
Lexi Bando, Senior, Guard, 10.2 ppg, 1.7 rpg
Satou Sabally, Freshman, Forward, 10.9 ppg, 3.8 rpg
Ruthy Hebard, Sophomore, Forward, 17.5 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 1.5 bpg
Key Role Players:
Mallory McGwire, Sophomore, Forward, 5.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg
Oti Gilden, Junior, Forward, 3.6 ppg, 3.3 rpg
Annell Maley, Freshman, Guard, 2.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 82.6 (9th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 63.3 (138, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 49.9 (4, 1)    
Field-Goal Defense: 38.9 (99, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.9 (16, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 40.2 (2, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 75.8 (29, 2)
Rebound Margin: 7.0 (32, 3)
Assists Per Game: 19.5 (6, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.1 (40, 4)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2017    NCAA Round of 64 win over Temple
2017    NCAA Round of 32 win over Duke
2017    NCAA Regional Semifinal win over Maryland
2017    NCAA Regional Final loss to Connecticut
2016    NIT     First Round win over Long Beach State
2016    NIT     Second Round win over Fresno State
2016    NIT     Third Round win over Utah
2016    NIT     Quarterfinal win over UTEP
2016    NIT     Semifinal loss to South Dakota
2014    NIT     First Round win over Pacific
2014    NIT     Second Round loss to Washington
2010    NIT     Round of 64 win over Eastern Washington
2010    NIT     Round of 32 win over New Mexico
2010    NIT     Regional Semifinal loss to California
2007    NIT     Second Round win over UC-Santa Barbara
2007    NIT     Third Round loss to Wyoming
*all team stats through 3/1