McConnell's Career-High, Not Enough in Loss to Cal Lutheran - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

McConnell's Career-High, Not Enough in Loss to Cal Lutheran

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McConnell hit 13 of 24 shots and grabbed six rebounds.  She was also 7-8 from the free throw line to surpass her previous career high of 28 points she hit twice, most recently in a win over Puget Sound last January. McConnell hit 13 of 24 shots and grabbed six rebounds. She was also 7-8 from the free throw line to surpass her previous career high of 28 points she hit twice, most recently in a win over Puget Sound last January.

WhitworthPirates.com

WALLA WALLA, Wash. – KC McConnell scored a career-high 35 points but it wasn't quite enough to help Whitworth overcome California Lutheran in a 71-61 loss on Saturday evening at the Kim Evanger Raney Classic hosted by Whitman College.

The Pirates fell to 3-3 and the Regals, favorites in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletics Conference, improved to 3-3.  Whitworth rallied from an 11-point, fourth quarter deficit to within four points late in the game, but could not come all the way back.

McConnell hit 13 of 24 shots and grabbed six rebounds.  She was also 7-8 from the free throw line to surpass her previous career high of 28 points she hit twice, most recently in a win over Puget Sound last January.

Whitworth jumped out to a 13-0 lead five minutes into the game as CLU missed its first seven shots from the floor and committed four turnovers.  McConnell had six of those points.  But the Regals answered with a 12-2 run and the game was on.

Trailing 17-12 at the start of the second quarter, CLU opened with a 13-2 run to take a 25-19 lead, capped by a jumper from Haley Hodgeson.  But Whitworth fought back to take a 32-29 lead at halftime after a McConnell three-pointer.  McConnell scored 17 of her points in the opening half.

The Pirates opened their largest lead of the second half at 38-33 with 7:28 left in the third quarter after a McConnell jumper.  CLU answered with a 10-3 run and the Regals would not trail again.  CLU led 46-44 at the end of the third.

The Regals grabbed their first double-digit lead (56-46) halfway through the fourth quarter after a pair of free throws by Sofia Cruz and led 61-50 with 3:45 left.  But McConnell had one final burst, scoring seven straight points to get the Bucs back within 61-57 with 2:46 to go, but that was as close as Whitworth would get.  Chelsea Jacoby's lay-up with 1:27 to play increased CLU's lead back to 67-59 and essentially clinched the game.

Faith Emerson added a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Pirates.  Whitworth made 24-59 (41%) from the floor, 5-19 (26%) from three-point range.  The Bucs were 8-11 (73%) from the free throw line, but committed 21 turnovers.

Jacoby led CLU with 16 points while Jessica Salottolo and Hodgson added 15 points each.  Hodgson led the Regals with nine boards.  CLU made 23-51 (45%) from the floor, 4-13 (31%) from three-point range.  The Regals went 21-21 from the free throw line in the game. 

Whitworth will take on Southwestern (Texas) on Sunday to close out its participation at the Raney Classic.

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