Loyd's 24 leads Ducks past UTEP

EUGENE — Johnathan Loyd had career highs of 24 points and six 3-pointers to lead Oregon past UTEP 64-59 on Tuesday night.

Olu Ashaolu scored 13 points for the Ducks (4-1), who won their fourth straight. It was Ashaolu's best game in an Oregon uniform after transferring from Louisiana Tech for his senior season.

Michael Perez scored 18 points and John Bohannon had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Miners (1-4), who shot nearly 50 percent from the field but were just 6-for-16 from the free throw line.

Loyd had no such shooting problems. The sophomore guard went 8-for-11 from the field, including 6-of-7 on 3-pointers.

"From warmups my shot was feeling good," Loyd said. "I told (teammate) Nick Lucenti it was going to be a good day."

Loyd scored 18 in the second half, breaking a 23-23 halftime tie with the first of his four second-half 3-pointers in the opening minute.

"That was a good effort on a night we really needed it," said Oregon coach Dana Altman, whose team was outrebounded 31-29, had 15 turnovers to UTEP's 13 and was outshot 49.1 percent to 43.5 percent.

"We seemed to be a step slow," Altman said. "Our bounce wasn't good. We were fortunate to win the game. They were quicker to all the loose balls. Our defensive effort wasn't what it needed to be."

Though the Ducks led for the entire second half, it was still a one-point game after UTEP's Malcolm Moore made two free throws to cut it to 60-59 with 34 seconds to play.

But E.J. Singler broke through the Miners' press and found Ashaolu on the baseline for an emphatic dunk to make it 62-59 with 21.4 seconds left.

Perez missed a 3-pointer at the other end, and Oregon's Garrett Sim finished the scoring with two free throws.

"They ran their sets really well, and they're long, athletic players, so they were kind of hard to guard," Singler said. "But we didn't bring an effort to match theirs. They just played harder, but luckily we came out with the win."

After the game, Altman announced freshman Bruce Barron had left the team. The seldom-used guard from Carbondale, Ill., had an injury-plagued start to his Oregon career, with a knee injury slowing him during the summer and a concussion forcing him to miss the two exhibition games and the season opener against Vanderbilt.

Barron is the second freshman to quit the team in 10 days. On Nov. 19, guard Jabari Brown, the prize recruit in Oregon's last recruiting class, abruptly left the team.

"We're going to move on with the 13 guys we have here," Altman said.

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