Pirate Men Earn Eighth-Straight NWC Crown - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Pirate Men Earn Eighth-Straight NWC Crown

Posted:
The Whitworth men's basketball team continued it's Northwest Conference dominance on Saturday night. The Whitworth men's basketball team continued it's Northwest Conference dominance on Saturday night.

by Whitworth University Sports Information

SPOKANE, Wash. – Fifteenth-ranked Whitworth stared down a furious rally to defeat visiting Puget Sound 71-68 in the Northwest Conference Tournament Championship game on Saturday night.

The Pirates (22-5) earned their eighth consecutive conference tournament crown and will advance to the NCAA Division III tournament for the ninth time since 2003. The Loggers finish the season 15-12.

Down by three points (68-65), the momentum running away along with a 14-point halftime lead, the Whitworth men's basketball team was in serious trouble with 2:32 to play. But Pirate seniors Dustin McConnell and Colton McCargar answered the call and scored the final six points to give Whitworth the win.

"I couldn't be prouder of Dustin and Colton for the way they stepped up at the end of the game," said Pirate head coach Matt Logie. "It's the way you want seniors of their ability to play, but not everyone is capable of doing it the way they did."

The fact that it came down to the final possessions was a credit to the visiting Loggers. Whitworth controlled the first half by shooting 56% from the floor and outrebounding UPS 17-14. McCargar scored 13 points in the first half and the Pirates never trailed. Leading 24-21 with seven minutes to go, Whitworth closed the half on a 16-5 run. McCargar had half of those final points and Christian Jurlina scored just before the buzzer to give the Bucs a 40-26 lead heading to the locker rooms.

Puget Sound chipped away throughout the second half. Nick Holden's free throws pulled the Loggers within 48-42, but McCargar answered with a three-pointer. Erin Barber's three-pointer got UPS within 53-50, but McConnell hit his own three for a 58-52 Pirate lead. The Loggers continued to come, tying the game 58-58 on Rex Nelson's free throws with six minutes left.

When McCargar hit his final three for a 65-61 Pirate advantage, it appeared Whitworth might've taken the Loggers' best shot. But that was still to come. James Osorio scored five straight to give UPS its 68-65 lead with 2:32 left in the game, forcing a Whitworth timeout. Those would be the Loggers' final points of the game.

"We said to the guys during the timeout that it was a one-possession game and we've been here plenty of times before," Logie said. "Our guys never panicked and the seniors did what they've done so many times before."

After an exchange of possessions, McConnell drove to the hole for a layup to get the Bucs within one point. After a defensive stop, McCargar nailed a long two-point jumper to give Whitworth the lead with 53 seconds left. Another strong defensive stand led to a rebound by George Valle and McCargar was fouled with 13.7 seconds left. He calmly made both for the final margin. Puget Sound did not get a good look at a three and had to hoist a long attempt before time expired.

McCargar led all players with 25 points and he also led the Pirates with seven rebounds. McConnell dished seven assists and scored 15, and in the process became the 24th player in Whitworth history to surpass 1,000 career points. He has 1,002. Christian Jurlina added 13 points while Valle finished with 10. Whitworth survived despite making only 33% of its shots in the second half.

Four Loggers scored in double figures, led by Barber's 15 points. Holden posted a double-double with 14 points and 11 boards. Nelson and Osorio scored 11 points each. UPS outrebounded Whitworth 23-14 in the second half to finish with a 37-31 edge on the boards.

Whitworth's win is its 12th in a row over the Loggers, and fourth straight in an NWC tournament final since 2008.

Whitworth now awaits word on the date, location and time of its opening game in the 2014 NCAA Division III tournament. That information will be announced on Monday morning.

  • College SportsCollegeMore>>

  • Gonzaga Women's Basketball Announces WCC Slate

    Gonzaga Women's Basketball Announces WCC Slate

    First-year Gonzaga University head women’s basketball coach Lisa Fortier will make her West Coast Conference debut at home as the 2014-15 WCC schedule was announced Tuesday.More >>
    First-year Gonzaga University head women’s basketball coach Lisa Fortier will make her West Coast Conference debut at home as the 2014-15 WCC schedule was announced Tuesday.More >>
  • Sweets & Pippins Rank in Top 50 Nationally for Attendance Numbers

    Sweets & Pippins Rank in Top 50 Nationally for Attendance Numbers

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 12:59 PM EDT2014-08-20 16:59:01 GMT
    For the fifth season in a row, the Walla Walla Sweets, despite playing in one of the continent’s smallest markets, finished in the Top 50 (#45), while the Yakima Valley Pippins joined the rankings in their inaugural season, ranking number 35 nationally when it comes to attendance numbers.More >>
    For the fifth season in a row, the Walla Walla Sweets, despite playing in one of the continent’s smallest markets, finished in the Top 50 (#45), while the Yakima Valley Pippins joined the rankings in their inaugural season, ranking number 35 nationally when it comes to attendance numbers.More >>
  • 2014 College Football Schedule on SWX

    College Football on SWX

    SWX is proud to present another exciting year of college football! Below is a listing of all the games slated to be broadcast during the 2014 season. All games will be shown LIVE on SWX in their respective regions, and all games will be seen in HD where available.More >>
    SWX is proud to present another exciting year of college football! Below is a listing of all the games slated to be broadcast during the 2014 season. All games will be shown LIVE on SWX in their respective regions, and all games will be seen in HD where available.More >>
  • WhitworthWhitworthMore>>

  • Whitworth Head Coach Rod Sandberg In Studio

    Whitworth Head Coach Rod Sandberg In Studio

    Whitworth football head coach Rod Sandberg joined SWX's John Collett in the Fasteners Sports Studio to talk about the upcoming 2014 season at the Pine Bowl on Friday, Aug. 15. Sandberg is entering into his first season as the Pirates head coach after spending 11 years as the defensive coordinator at Wheaton College (Div. III) in Illinois and spent a total of 19 seasons with the Thunder as the linebackers coach before running the defense and also was the recruiting coordinato...More >>
    Whitworth football head coach Rod Sandberg joined SWX's John Collett in the Fasteners Sports Studio to talk about the upcoming 2014 season at the Pine Bowl on Friday, Aug. 15. Sandberg is entering into his first season as the Pirates head coach after spending 11 years as the defensive coordinator at Wheaton College (Div. III) in Illinois and spent a total of 19 seasons with the Thunder as the linebackers coach before running the defense and also was the recruiting coordinato...More >>
  • Local College Football Fall Practice Schedules

    Local College Football Fall Practice Schedules

    All four of the local college football teams will kick off their Fall practices this week with the 2014 season fast approaching. Compiled below is a list of practice schedules for Eastern Washington University, University of Idaho, Washington State University and Whitworth University.More >>
    All four of the local college football teams will kick off their Fall practices this week with the 2014 season fast approaching. Compiled below is a list of practice schedules for Eastern Washington University, University of Idaho, Washington State University and Whitworth University.
    More >>
  • Local Basketball Teams Praised By NABC For Excellence

    Local Basketball Teams Praised By NABC For Excellence

    A trio of local University basketball teams have been named among the best academically by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) on Wednesday, July 23.More >>
    A trio of local University basketball teams have been named among the best academically by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) on Wednesday, July 23.
    More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and SWXRN. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.