EUGENE — Tony Woods scored 14 points, including an emphatic two-handed dunk late in the game to put Oregon up for good in an 83-73 victory against Northern Arizona on Saturday night in the season opener for both teams.
Freshman Damyean Dotson also scored 13 points for the Ducks, E.J. Singler added 12 points and eight rebounds, and Dominic Artis had 10, which sealed the win with a game-ending 17-6 run.
The Ducks, who returned only four scholarship players with game experience, started three freshmen against the Lumberjacks and played six, but it was the veterans who ignited the rally.
Oregon trailed 67-66 with 5:43 to play following back-to-back 3-pointers by NAU’s Dewayne Russell and Blake Hamilton.
But Woods, a senior center, put the Ducks back on top when he spun through the lane and thundered home a dunk for a 68-67 advantage.
Singler, a senior forward, followed with a rebound basket and senior forward Carlos Emory drained a 3-pointer as the Ducks took off on a 13-0 run that ended with a 79-67 lead with :36.8 seconds left.
“Fortunately, we were able to put together some boards, get some stops and execute our offense and put together a run," Woods said.
The Lumberjacks missed eight straight shots during Oregon’s run.
“We had so many combinations (of players) during the game and a lot of them did not work," Oregon coach Dana Altman said. “When it got closer I just decided to go with the four guys that had experience, that got us back in the lead and a little bit of control."
The Lumberjacks gave the Ducks a game for much of the first half, and a 3-pointer by Michael Dunn made it 30-30 with 6:21 to play.
Oregon responded with its best stretch of the half, outscoring NAU 15-2 over the next four minutes to take a 45-32 advantage with 2:27 to go before halftime, going into the break up 45-35.
Six different players scored during that run for Oregon, including Dotson, who scored off a rebound and then made a 3-pointer on consecutive possessions. The Lumberjacks slowly picked away at the Ducks’ lead in the second half until Hamilton finally gave NAU its first lead of the game with his 3-pointer.
Also on Saturday:
No. 15 Missouri 83
S. Illinois-Edwardsville 69
COLUMBIA, Mo. — Laurence Bowers had 20 points and seven rebounds in his return from a knee injury that sidelined him all of last season, leading Missouri to a season-opening victory.
No. 22 Notre Dame 58
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Jack Cooley scored the first nine points of the game and finished with 19, Scott Martin had 17 rebounds and Notre Dame won its season opener.
Arizona State 79
Central Arkansas 64
TEMPE, Ariz. — Jordan Bachynski had 17 points and 11 rebounds, Jahii Carson was steady in his debut and Arizona State used a big first-half run to roll to the win.
Washington State 88
Eastern Washington 69
PULLMAN, Wash. — Brock Motum added 23 points and pulled down 10 rebounds for his fourth career double-double to help Washington State win.