Whitworth Dominates Willamette in Women's Hoops - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Whitworth Dominates Willamette in Women's Hoops

he Pirates tied their season-high of 16 steals to force another season high of 26 turnovers and improved to 9-5 overall and 4-1 in the NWC. he Pirates tied their season-high of 16 steals to force another season high of 26 turnovers and improved to 9-5 overall and 4-1 in the NWC.

whitworthpirates.com

SALEM, Ore. – After building a 17-point lead early in the third quarter, visiting Whitworth held on for a 58-47 win at Willamette in a Northwest Conference women's basketball game on Friday night.

The Pirates tied their season-high of 16 steals to force another season high of 26 turnovers and improved to 9-5 overall and 4-1 in the NWC.  The Bearcats, who have already won ten games in a season for the first time since 2001-02, fell to 10-4 overall and 2-3 in the NWC.

KC McConnell scored a game-high 26 points to lead Whitworth to the win. 

The Pirates never trailed in the game, jumping out to a quick 6-0 lead after a McConnell three-pointer and a three-point play by Faith Emerson.  The Bearcats were still within 27-21 midway through the second quarter before Whitworth closed the half on a 9-0 run.  McConnell scored the final 12 points of the half for the Pirates, who made 56% (14-25) from the field in the opening two quarters to take a 36-21 lead into the locker rooms.

Callie Harwood's two free throws one minute into the third quarter gave Whitworth its largest lead of the game at 38-21.  Willamette closed to within 40-29 on a basket by Kali Vickery midway through the period, but Alexis McLeod stopped the run with a basket and Whitworth reopened a 48-31 lead on Faith Cebula's basket late in the quarter. 

Taking a 50-35 lead into the final quarter, Whitworth relied on its defense to put the game away.  Willamette got as close as 54-45, but that was with less than a minute to play in the game.  McConnell went 4-4 at the free throw line in the final 30 seconds to prevent any hope of a miracle comeback.

It was the fourth time this season that Whitworth has held an opponent below 50 points in a game.

McConnell made 8-15 from the field, including 4-9 from three-point range.  She was also 6-6 at the free throw line and led the Bucs with four steals.  Emerson finished with 13 points and led the team with five rebounds. 

Madi Andresen led Willamette with 13 points and Kylie Towry added ten. 

Whitworth will return to action tomorrow night at unbeaten and 2nd-ranked George Fox (14-0).

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