Thanks to the Pac-12 being a debacle of a league this season, few expected the Oregon Ducks to make any noise in the 2019 NCAA Tournament. Then, thanks in part to riding the wave growing from a good conference tournament showing, Oregon dismantled the Wisconsin Badgers in the opening round of the Big Dance.
If you ask pretty much anyone involved with the team, part of the motivation has been to show how the Ducks belong in the NCAA Tournament. Furthermore, to put away any ideas that the run they’ve been on is a fluke.
“It showed everybody today, it wasn’t a fluke,” Payton Pritchard, who scored 19 points, said after the Badgers win. “We’re here to play. We’re here to win it.”
“To see them come like this and have so much fun, that’s why we coach, just to see guys get together and have fun and play their tails off,” coach Dana Altman said. “That’s what they’re doing right now.”
Up next for the Oregon Ducks is this season’s Cinderella, the UC Irvine Anteaters, in the Round of 32.
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