Wildcats Outshoot Simon Fraser to Earn 86-70 Home Victory - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Wildcats Outshoot Simon Fraser to Earn 86-70 Home Victory

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From CWU Athletics

ELLENSBURG, Wash. (Feb. 7) -- Four Central Washington University men's basketball players scored in double figures, and the Wildcats shot an even 50 percent from the field to defeat visiting Simon Fraser University, 86-70, on Thursday night at Nicholson Pavilion.

The Wildcats improved to 13-7 on the season with the victory, and are now 7-5 in Great Northwest Athletic Conference games. Simon Fraser fell to 6-14 overall and 1-11 in the conference.

Junior Mark McLaughlin (Bothell, Wash./Inglemoor HS) once again led CWU in scoring, totaling 15 of his game-high 21 points in the first half. He finished 8 for 16 from the floor and added eight rebounds, while juniors Nate Walker (Tacoma, Wash./Henry Foss HS) and Kevin Davis (Federal Way, Wash./Todd Beamer HS) sparked the Wildcats' inside game off the bench with 15 points apiece. Davis, who was 6 of 8 from the field, had a game-high nine rebounds and four blocked shots, while Walker (7 of 11 shooting) added six boards.

CWU led for most of the game, with a few exceptions -- especially early in the contest. A lay-up by Davis at the 10:54 mark in the opening period gave the Wildcats the lead at 16-15, and CWU did not trail again in the first half. Simon Fraser did tie the score at 22-22 with just under six minutes left before halftime, but the Wildcats responded with a 4-0 run and held a 39-34 edge at the break.

Simon Fraser kept the game close for the first 11 1/2 minutes of the second half, and actually regained the lead at 52-51 with 13:58 to go, but after the game's final tie two minutes later, the host Wildcats began to break away. CWU finished the game on a 25-11 run over the last 8:54, and held a double-digit lead for nearly 6 1/2 minutes during that closing span.

The Wildcats took control of the paint, outscoring the Clan by a 44-20 margin in the pain. CWU also held a commanding 45-30 edge in rebounding, with six of its players totaling five or more rebounds. Efficient shooting nights by Davis, Walker, and McLaughlin (8 of 16), as well as senior Derrick Davis (Tacoma, Wash./Clover Park HS; 4 of 6, 12 points) helped fuel the offensive attack.

SFU was led by the 18 points and seven rebounds of junior Taylor Dunn, who played at CWU during the 2010-11 season before transferring. Elijah Matthews added 13 points and Ibrahim Appiah scored 11 for the Clan.

CWU will now have a rematch with archrival and second-ranked Western Washington University (21-0, 12-0 GNAC) on Saturday night. The Wildcats lost to the Vikings on a last-second shot in Bellingham on Jan. 10, and will look to snap WWU's school-record 27-game winning streak when the two teams square off on Saturday (Feb. 9) at 7 p.m.

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