Ducks falter in second half

• NCAA tourney berth likely for Oregon after its strong run to finish season

By John Marshall / The Associated Press

Published Mar 14, 2014 at 12:01AM

Pac-12 tournament

Thursday’s Games

Quarterfinals

Arizona 71, Utah 39

Colorado 59, California 56

UCLA 82, Oregon 63

Stanford 79, Arizona St. 58

Today’s Games

Semifinals

Arizona vs. Colorado, 6 p.m.

UCLA vs. Stanford, 8:30 p.m.

LAS VEGAS — UCLA ended the regular season with a thud, losing to a team that had won two of its previous its previous 17 games.

After a few days to rest and reflect, the Bruins took out their frustrations on Oregon.

Playing well at both ends, UCLA turned what was expected to be close game into a rout, using a big second-half run to race past Oregon 82-63 in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 tournament on Thursday night.

The Bruins did little wrong in flying past the Ducks, opening the second half with a 16-4 run while keeping Oregon’s shooters locked down.

Jordan Adams scored 15 points and Travis Wear and Zach LaVine added 14 points each for UCLA.

“We came out in the first half and each team was throwing blows at each other. Oregon came in real hot,” Wear said. “I think we made some adjustments at halftime to relieve some of their pressure and defensively we just came out and shut them down in the beginning of the second half.”

The Ducks (23-9) had been on quite a run since early February and matched the Bruins in an entertaining first half. Oregon had no answer when the Bruins started to pull away, unable to get shots to fall or stop UCLA from scoring to end an eight-game winning streak.

Joseph Young was the only Oregon player to have any sustained success against UCLA, scoring 29 points while hitting six of his 11 3-point attempts.

The Ducks won’t have to worry too much; they should be a lock for the NCAA tournament when Selection Sunday rolls around.

“Sunday we’ll be excited for the selection show then we’ll get ready to play,” Oregon coach Dana Altman said. “It was a disappointing effort tonight, but we’ll bounce back. We’ve had to bounce back before and our guys will be ready to go Thursday or Friday, whichever day that we’re playing.”

The Ducks were arguably the conference’s best team at the end of the regular season, overcoming a shaky stretch by winning their final seven games. Oregon kept it going in the opening round of the Pac-12 tournament, blowing past rival Oregon State with a big second-half run for an 88-74 victory.

The game came as advertised, the teams zipping back and forth like it was a relay race, trading dunks, 3-pointers and athletic moves to the basket.

UCLA made 15 of 27 shots, Oregon 13 of 24, neither team able to get much separation.

Kyle Anderson had the highlight of the half, launching himself over Oregon’s Richard Amardi for a dunk that had the crowd still buzzing 30 seconds later and left Mardi dazed on the floor.

The Bruins kept the reel rolling to start the second half, making eight of their first 10 shots during an 18-4 run that put them up 55-39.

UCLA made 15 of 26 shots in the second half and clamped down on the Ducks defensively, holding them to 35 percent shooting over the final 20 minutes.

“The second half we didn’t get stops. We were scrambling a little bit there,” Altman said. “We did have some open looks. We didn’t hit shots, shots that we’d been hitting ... but it boiled down to defensively us just not getting stops.”

In other quarterfinals Thursday:

No. 4 Arizona 71, Utah 39: Nick Johnson scored 14 points, and T.J. McConnell added 13 as Arizona matched the most lopsided game in Pac-12 tournament history. Arizona ran through the record book against Utah, setting marks for fewest points allowed, fewest field goals (12) and lowest shooting percentage (25). The Wildcats held the Utes to 13 points in the first half, another record, and matched UCLA’s 32-point win over Oregon State in 2006.

Colorado 59, California 56: Askia Booker scored 17 points and Xavier Talton added 13 for Colorado, which led by as much as 11 before Cal made a late run to make it close.

Stanford 79, Arizona St. 58: Chasson Randle scored 21 points to lead Stanford to a win and a huge boost to its NCAA tournament hopes.