Men’s basketball: Whitworth faces its biggest road trip of the Northwest Conference season this week. The 11th-ranked Pirates are 2-0 in the NWC, tied with Pacific Lutheran and No. 16 Puget Sound atop the league standings. Within a 24-hour span, they’ll face both rivals.
Whitworth plays at PLU at 8 p.m. on Friday and at 16th-ranked UPS at 6 p.m. Saturday. The Pirates are 9-2 after rolling to a 76-51 win against Calvin College last week.
Saturday’s game will make the fifth time in recent years that Whitworth and Puget Sound have met while both teams were ranked in the D3hoops.com Top-25 poll.
Whitworth has won 62 of its last 68 games overall, and leads the conference this year in two of the biggest offensive categories: field-goal shooting (46.3 percent) and free throws (79.1 percent).
Mariners sign Japanese star
Baseball: The Seattle Mariners signed free-agent Japanese pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma to a one-year contract.
Iwakuma has a 107-69 record in 226 career games in Japan. The right-hander was selected the 2008 Pacific League MVP after going 21-4 with a 1.87 ERA. Last season, Iwakuma went 6-7 with a 2.42 ERA and 90 strikeouts. He missed part of the season with a sore right shoulder.
Jenks undergoes back procedure
Baseball: Boston Red Sox reliever Bobby Jenks has undergone a second spinal decompression procedure that could delay the start of his spring training
Jenks, 30, of Spirit Lake, is in the second year of a two-year, $20-million contract. He appeared in just 19 games last season with lingering back pain.