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Whitworth pushes past Linfield with strong second half

UPDATED: Sat., Jan. 20, 2018, 9:54 p.m.

 (Courtesy)

McMINNVILLE, Ore. – Trailing 40-38 with 11 minutes to play, visiting Whitworth used a 13-0 run over the next six minutes to take control in a 63-55 win at Linfield College on Saturday night at Ted Wilson Gymnasium.

The seventh-ranked Pirates improved to 15-2 overall and 7-1 in the Northwest Conference, trailing top-ranked Whitman by one game at the halfway point of the conference season. Whitworth leads third-place Linfield (11-5, 5-3) by two games.

Kyle Roach scored 18 of his game-high 21 points in the second half to help the Pirates claim their 20th consecutive win in the series.

Whitworth held a 51-40 lead with 4 minutes, 38 seconds to go before Linfield closed to within 59-55 with 33 seconds remaining.

Whitworth’s Jared Christy made 4 of 6 free throws in the final 30 seconds to keep Whitworth ahead.

Christy posted his eighth double-double of the season with 13 points and 13 rebounds. Ben College added 10 points.

Riley Bruil led the Wildcats with 14 points, including four of the team’s eight 3-pointers.

Whitworth returns home to host Pacific Lutheran and Puget Sound on Friday and Saturday to begin the second half of NWC play.