- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 23, 2014

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) - A favorite weapon wielded by the right man for the job paid off not once but twice for Oregon on Monday night.

Jalil Abdul-Bassit dropped in four 3-pointers, three during two personal scoring runs, and accounted for the final seven points in overtime to give the Ducks an 82-78 victory over UC Santa Barbara.

Abdul-Bassit finished with 20 points, and it was his eight-point run midway through the second half that brought Oregon (9-3) back for a shot at its fourth consecutive win.

“Jalil played fantastic today obviously,” coach Dana Altman said. “Hitting shots, playing good defense, rebounding. He gave us a huge lift.”

The Ducks needed Abdul-Bassit’s game-winning heroics in overtime after they missed a chance for the victory in regulation.

Joseph Young, who led Oregon with 25 points and 11 rebounds, went to the foul line for two shots with two seconds left and made the first to tie the score at 71. But Young, the Pac-12 leader coming into the game at 95.5 percent, missed the second, and the Gauchos (5-6) grabbed the rebound to force the extra period.

In overtime, UCSB’s Alan Williams, who recorded his 40th career double-double with 26 points and 12 rebounds, scored twice on short bank shots to give the Gauchos their last lead at 78-75. From there it was all Abdul-Bassit, whose final 3-pointer followed by a short jumper and two free throws settled the issue.

“We had a couple good buckets, but we just couldn’t reel them in at the other end,” UCSB coach Bob Williams said of the overtime. “We had some gambles defensively, and we really struggled in getting some key rebounds and staying matched up and getting stops against them.”

Oregon started the game strong, leading by as many as 11 points before settling for a 36-30 lead at the break. The Ducks had made nine of their 13 field goals in the paint while holding the Gauchos to 31 percent shooting.

“We felt we were in good position at halftime considering how poorly we’d shot the ball to only be down six,” Bob Williams said. “We thought we’d dodged a big bullet.”

The Gauchos came out firing to start the second half, going 6 of 7 during a 14-2 run as they outscored Oregon 28-10 for a 58-46 lead by the 11:56 mark.

“We were dead in the water, and we weren’t moving,” Altman said. “It was a bad stretch for us.”

Enter Abdul-Bassit, the best 3-point shooter (now 22 of 48) on a team that thrives on the long ball, for no one in the Pac-12 shoots more of them than the Ducks. He hit two 3s among his eight straight points during a 10-0 run that brought Oregon back to life.

Young then hit back-to-back 3s to bring the Ducks even at 62-62, and neither team led by more than three points the rest of the way until Abdul-Bassit’s final free throws.

Dillon Brooks, back in the starting lineup after one game as a reserve, added 12 points for the Ducks, and Jordan Bell had 10 rebounds and three blocked shots.

For the Gauchos, Michael Bryson added 21 points, including 15 after halftime, and John Green had 18. With one more game before conference play begins, Altman felt the overtime experience would serve his young team well.

“The way it worked out, it was a great experience for us,” he said. “I think we were undefeated in overtime games last year and now this year, we’re going to get in them and we’ve got to get used to them.”

TIP-INS

UC Santa Barbara: Michael Bryson converted a rare four-point play late in the first half after he was knocked to the floor by Oregon’s Dwayne Benjamin on a deep 3-pointer. The Gauchos had gone 5:40 between field goals before Bryson’s basket.

Oregon: Dillon Brooks, who was held to seven points in 25 minutes coming off the bench in Saturday’s win over Delaware State, had eight points in the first five minutes against the Gauchos. The freshman finished with 12 before fouling out with his 11th double-digit scoring effort in 12 games this season.

COLOR HIM SURPRISED

Joseph Young saw his free-throw accuracy slip to 92.3 percent after he went 6 of 8 on Monday night. He’s now 48 of 52 through 12 games. “I was shocked like everybody else,” Altman said of Young’s miss at the end of regulation, “and then he missed another one in overtime. We were fortunate that we came back and won the game, but I was surprised and I think everybody was.”

HARM WITH NO FOUL

Oregon’s final possession of regulation didn’t go as UCSB coach Bob Williams had planned, because his team had a foul to give. “You let a second-and-a-half run off, foul and then force them to inbound the ball again,” he said. Instead, Young shook free off a pick and was fouled while shooting before hitting the tying point to force overtime.

GAUCHO FRESHMAN STILL IN HOSPITAL

UC Santa Barbara’s Ami Lakoju spent a second night in a Springfield, Oregon, hospital for observation and tests after collapsing during practice Sunday night at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene. A team spokesman said the 6-foot-8, 280-pound freshman from Harlem, New York, was alert, talking and in good condition but would remain in the hospital, possibly through Christmas, as more tests are performed. He also said Coach Williams was expected to stay behind with Lakoju.

UP NEXT

UC Santa Barbara plays at Oregon State on Dec. 30.

Oregon hosts UC Irvine on Dec. 29.

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