Tajuan Porter, tied an NCAA regional record with eight 3-pointers and finished with 33 points, as Oregon withstood a frantic comeback to beat seventh-seeded UNLV 76-72 on Friday in the Midwest Regional.
Malik Hairston had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Oregon (29-7). Maarty Leunen hit three 3-pointers and added 11 points. "I just came out with a lot of confidence," Porter said.
During one stretch in the first half, Porter scored 17 straight points for Oregon, hitting five 3-pointers in a span of just over five minutes. Even when he was fouled tossing up a 3, Porter canned all three free throws.He capped a 14-2 run with a 3-pointer less than a minute out of halftime, giving the Ducks a 45-33 lead and forcing UNLV coach Lon Kruger to call a timeout. But a few minutes later, Porter pulled up in transition and buried another one from the top of the arc to make it 58-40.
The game was never as close as the final score would indicate. The Ducks were outstanding on defense and Porter reminded us of the glory days of the Sega Genesis. We would sit for hours on end playing NBA Jams, listening to the announcer declare, "he's on fire", "is it the shoes?" or "boom-shaka-laka".
The Ducks will play #1 seed Florida on Sunday. Game time is 11:40 am PDT on CBS.