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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Whitworth men let 14-point lead get away in loss at Willamette 85-78

From staff reports

SALEM – Whitworth squandered a 14-point first-half lead and lost a shootout to the Willamette Bearcats, who caught fire in the second half and stunned the Northwest Conference front-runners.

Willamette shot 64.3% from the field after halftime, outpunching the Pirates for an 85-78 upset win on Saturday night at Cone Field House.

Whitworth (12-7, 8-2 NWC) dropped its second conference game in as many nights. The Pirates led by a comfortable margin for most of the first half. They went up 30-16 with about 6 minutes left in the first half, but Willamette’s offense came alive and the Bearcats closed the gap to 37-34 at halftime.

The Bearcats (11-7, 6-4) sustained their hot shooting in the second half and finished 18 of 28 on field-goal attempts. For the game, Willamette shot 54.1% from the field and 8 of 20 (40%) on 3-pointers.

The Pirates were efficient from the field (52.5%), but had an off night from 3-point distance (5 of 15). Whitworth also committed 13 turnovers, nine in the second half, and forced just seven.

Guard Jake Holtz paced Whitworth with 20 points. Guard Jojo Anderson, a Mt. Spokane High grad, scored 18 points (7-of-12 shooting from the field) and added four assists. Forward Ty Edwards also scored 18 points.

Four players scored in double figures for Willamette.

Whitworth, which had won seven straight games before absorbing two upset losses this week, will play at 8 p.m. Tuesday against Whitman in Walla Walla. The teams are tied for first place in the NWC.

Women’s basketball

Willamette 66, Whitworth 47: The visiting Pirates had an inefficient shooting night but were overmatched by one of the conference’s top teams.

Willamette pulled away early in the second half and cruised over Whitworth at Cone Field House.

The Pirates (6-13, 3-7 NWC) dropped their third straight game. They led Willamette by six points after the first quarter, but shot 2 of 15 from the field in the second quarter.

The Bearcats (12-7, 9-1) used a 10-0 run late in the quarter to take the momentum, then created a comfortable lead with an 11-0 spurt early in the third. Willamette sits in a tie for first alongside Pacific.

Whitworth shot 16 of 57 (28.1%) from the field and went 7 of 32 (21.9%) on 3-point attempts. The Bearcats shot 44.6% from the floor and hit 50% of their 3-point tries.

Whitworth forward Emma Maxwell led all scorers with 17 points off the bench. The junior from Medical Lake shot 6 of 9 from the floor. Pirates senior guard Kimberly Dewey added 11 points. Whitworth guard Mya Edwards, a 5-foot-7 sophomore from Kettle Falls, Washington, pulled down a career-high 14 rebounds.

Forward Elyse Waldal and guard Kaitlin Imai paced Willamette with 13 and 12 points, respectively.

Whitworth faces NWC opponent Whitman at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Walla Walla.