Feb 15, 2013, 5:41 PM EDT
Oregon freshman point guard Dominic Artis hasn’t played since Jan. 23 and that won’t change this weekend against Washington State.
The No. 23 Ducks improved to 3-3 without Artis in the lineup after a 65-52 win against Washington on Wednesday. The 6-foot-1 first-year guard was averaging 10.2 points and a team-high 3.8 assists per game, leading Oregon to a 17-2 start. Oregon is averaging over 17 turnovers a game over this seven-game stretch without Artis running the show, coughing the ball up 20 or more times in three of those games.
Oregon still sits atop the Pac-12 Conference, but not by much. UCLA and Arizona are tied for second place and trail by only a game. Both UCLA and Arizona provided a reason why the Ducks shouldn’t overlook the last place Cougars in Saturday’s matchup in Pullman. The Bruins and Wildcats both lost on the road Thursday night — UCLA lost by 13 to Cal and Colorado got revenge against Arizona.
“Any time anybody goes on the road, a lot of different things can happen,” Altman said on Friday. “You got to get focused and get ready — just like we have to be for Washington Sate on Saturday.”
Oregon has won two straight since dropping three straight, but is barely holding on to the conference’s top spot. Artis returning to the lineup can’t come soon enough.
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