Whitworth men run past L&C in NWC semifinal - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Whitworth Basketball

Whitworth men run past L&C in NWC semifinal

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(Photo: SWX) (Photo: SWX)

Courtesy Whitworth Athletics

SPOKANE, Wash. - Something about the color orange must affect Bo Gregg. The Pirate senior scored 21 points to lead Whitworth to an 89-65 win over visiting Lewis & Clark College in a Northwest Conference men's basketball semifinal game on Thursday night in the Whitworth Fieldhouse.

Gregg's (Sr., F, Lewiston, Idaho) two highest scoring games this season have come against the Pioneers and his effort tonight helped 5th-ranked Whitworth improve to 24-2 overall with its 23rd consecutive victory.

The Pirates will host George Fox University on Saturday night in the NWC tournament final with the conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Division III tournament on the line. The Bruins won 76-66 at Linfield College in tonight's other NWC semifinal.

With the Pirates trailing 18-14 six minutes into the first half, Gregg hit a long three-pointer to spark Whitworth into the lead. He had four points in a 10-0 run that gave the Bucs a 24-18 advantage. L&C took its final lead of the first half when Tyler Tsukazaki hit a three-pointer for a 25-24 edge for the Pioneers. Whitworth then closed the half on a 18-3 run to take a 42-28 lead into the locker rooms.

The Pirates made 57% (16-28) of their shots in the first half and outrebounded the Pioneers 19-11. Gregg had 11 points in the period, while L&C's Kelly Edwards was keeping the Pioneers within shouting distance with 13 first half points.

The Pirates quickly stretched the lead to 19 points early in the second half and the Pioneers would not get closer than 16 points the rest of the way. Whitworth took its largest lead of the game (81-54) when Chase Ramey (Fr., G, Spokane, Wash.) hit a three from the top of the key with just over five minutes to play.

Gregg made 4-5 from three point range and 8-10 from the field overall for his 21 points. He scored a season-high 22 on January 30th in Whitworth's last win at home over L&C.

Nate Montgomery (Sr., P, Sammamish, Wash.), who was named the 2010 NWC Player of the Year earlier on Thursday, powered his way inside for 19 points and 11 rebounds and also tied for a team high with five assists. Jack Loofburrow (So., F, Yakima, Wash.) hit four three-pointers off of the bench for 14 points.

Edwards finished with 20 points for the Pioneers. James Hollins posted a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds, while Kyle Meeuwsen added 12 points.

Lewis & Clark (10-15) is not done with its season. The Pioneers arranged their practice schedule to start after the allowable fall date in order to schedule a game at the University of Portland on Tuesday night (March 2).

Whitworth's game with George Fox will tip off at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday.

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