Saturday, February 8, 2020

Three Beautiful Things 02/07/20: Slow Day, Terps Leap to the Top, Ducks Overwhelm Arizona

1. My ups and downs during the night with Charly and joining my friends for 6 a.m. breakfast at Sam's this morning left me feeling sleep deprived and so I didn't, as I thought I might, make a trip to CdA. I nodded off from time to time in the morning, chipped away at cleaning up the kitchen, made a trip to Yoke's and the Post Office, and got a little reading done.

Good ole Charly slept most of the day and didn't even have her first meal until in the afternoon. She really is living pretty much on a day is night, night is day schedule and so my sleep patterns, which I cherish (!), are currently in a state of disruption.  It's all right. I think it's all part of her aging and Charly is going through this so courageously that I'm inspired to help her out with patience.

2. All day, I was looking forward to Maryland (my old neighborhood team) and Illinois tipping off in a men's game between teams at the top of the Big 10 standings.

Earlier in the day, Byrdman and I texted a bit about this game. I agreed 100% with Byrdman that Maryland's Jalen Smith and Anthony Cowan have been sizzling lately and remarked that I hoped Maryland's secondary scorers, Aaron Wiggins, Darryl Morsell, and Eric Ayala, could combine for 20-25 points in support of Smith and Cowan, thinking it would really boost Maryland's chances to beat Illinois.

Well, I underestimated the Terps' trio of secondary scorers. Not only did Maryland come back from an early 14 point deficit to beat Illinois, 75-66, but Wiggins, Morsell, and Ayala combined to score 37 points, more than supporting the 31 points Cowan and Smith combined to put up, and those three were crucial in Maryland's win, vital in helping Maryland take sole possession of first place in the conference.

3. While watching Maryland and Illinois, I did my best to keep an eye on the Oregon/Arizona women's game. I watched the first quarter while the Maryland game was at halftime and Oregon held an 18-10 lead at the end of the quarter. I left the Oregon game for a while and when I checked back, Arizona had cut Oregon's lead to four, 20-16. Dang. The Maryland game was at a tense juncture. I returned to it and then, later, when I switched to the Pac-12 Network, I caught the halftime interview with Coach Graves and was startled to see that Oregon had swollen their lead to 17 points and led 39-22 at the half.

I finished watching the Maryland game and when I returned to the Matt in Eugene, the rout was on. The Ducks were scoring from everywhere. Taylor Chavez was cooking with gas from the perimeter; Sabrina Ionescu was on her way to a triple double and hit a shot from the Dairy Mart at 3425 Hilyard in South Eugene at the buzzer to end the third quarter and put the Ducks up 72-38; Ruthy Hebard scored 22 points, hammering away in the paint; Satou Sabally poured in 17, on drives to the iron as well as three buckets from three point land.  The Wildcats are a very good team. They have the conference's best defense and several potent players, led by the conference's top scorer, Ari McDonald, but Oregon overwhelmed the Wildcats tonight in their 85-52 win.

What I saw was breathtaking.

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