The men’s and women’s basketball teams lost to Whitworth University on Friday, Nov. 30 in Spokane, WA. The women’s game was fairly close, 74-69. The men’s team, on the other hand, fell behind and could not catch up, 86-69. Both teams struggled against Whitman College on Saturday, Dec. 1, as they both were outscored by nearly double. The Whitman women’s basketball team held WU to 22.6 percent shooting, while the Blues just about doubled that at 44.6 percent. The Whitman men’s averaged over 100 points entering their game with WU. Needless to say, the Whitman Blues were one of WU’s toughest opponents yet.
The women’s basketball team kept things close through the first and second quarter as the Bearcats only trailed, 36-30 at halftime. In the third quarter, Whitworth surged forward with a 19-6 run, but WU turned it around and got a 17-6 run. The Bearcats pulled within one point at 45-44 with just under two minutes to go in the third quarter. Early in the fourth quarter, the Pirates held a small lead, and it pretty much remained this way until late in the quarter. The teams exchanged the next four baskets back-to-back to bring the score to 68-61 with 2:18 left in the game.
With 39 seconds left in the game, senior Britanny Kochenderfer made a three-pointer to pull the Bearcats within three points, 70-67. Whitworth claimed another two points taking a five-point lead at the 32-second mark. Camy Aguinaldo made one of two free throws for the Pirates one second later for a 73-69 lead. Junior Kassy Hopkins and first-year Madison Ballard both had opportunities to score before time expired, but both were unsuccessful. Aguinaldo made one more free throw in the final two seconds of the game to close out the scoring at 74-69.
In the game against Whitman, Kochenderfer scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Bearcats. She made seven of 15 field goals, including two of four shots from three-point range. Her teammates, sophomore Amanda Carpenter and senior Kali Vickery, each provided WU with five points. Vickery also managed to achieve three rebounds, two blocked shots and a steal.
The first quarter was low-scoring for the most part for the Bearcats. They scored six points, compared to the Blues’ 11. The Blues surged forward in the second quarter following a basket by Stone. Whitman scored 19 unanswered points and took a huge lead of 30-6 with just under six minutes left in the second quarter. Kochenderfer eventually broke the streak on a three-pointer with only 3:20 to go in the half. The Bearcats pulled as close to 32-13 on a layup by Kochenderfer about two minutes later but Whitman continued to extend its lead, bringing it up to 37-13 by the half.
The Bearcats opened the second half with a nice layup by Logsdon and a three-pointer by Carpenter. But the Blues managed to turn the tide and answered with eight consecutive points to prevent WU from rallying. The Blues gained a very slim scoring margin of 18-12 in the third quarter. The final score against Whitman was 75-33, with the Blues taking the win. Whitman forced WU to turnover the ball 14 times throughout the game. The Blues scored 25 points off turnovers while WU only recorded five points off turnovers. Whitman advanced to 5-2 overall, 2-0 in the Northwest Conference (NWC), while WU dropped to 3-5 overall, 0-2 in the NWC.
During the men’s game against Whitworth on Friday, WU scored the first five points on a jumper by junior CJ Walker and a three-pointer by senior Jordan Jenkins. Whitworth answered with a 10-4 run to take an 11-9 lead. First-year Jonathan Watts tied the score with a jumper, 14-14, but the Pirates reclaimed the lead by scoring seven unanswered points. Whitworth’s lead kept building and eventually reached 41-30 on a free throw with 1:10 left in the half.
In the second half, WU quickly closed the gap. First-year Jonathan Watts made a three-pointer and Jenkins scored on a fast break layup, leading to a score of 46-38. The Pirates then went on a 5-0 point run, extending their lead. With just under 15 minutes left in the game, the Pirates extended their lead to 15 points on a three-pointer by Ben College. WU got as close as 11 points, but could not get any closer for the remainder of the game. The final score was 86-69.
In the unfortunate lost against Whitman, Jenkins scored a career-high 25 points, making nine of 10 field goals and adding 13 rebounds. Although the Bearcats men’s team played well, Whitman defeated them, 104-59.
Joining Jenkins in double figures from WU on Saturday was senior Caleb Roberts. Roberts scored 10 points, sank four out of seven field goals and was two for five behind the 3-point line. Watts contributed eight points and seven rebounds.
The Blues kept non-stop pressure on the Bearcats, which allowed them to accumulate 18 steals and 32 turnovers from WU. By the end of the night, Whitman earned 32 turnovers, while the Bearcats only earned 10. Whitman took the early lead, 7-2, but the Bearcats pulled within two, 9-7, on a three-point play that included a layup and free throw by Jenkins. The next nine points were scored by Whitman, which allowed them to grab a comfortable lead, 18-7. WU got as close as 18-13 on a jump shot by sophomore Micah Fleming with 11:40 left in the half. By the time halftime came around, the Blues led, 47-28.
In the second half, the Blues quickly extended their lead to 55-28 with an 8-0 run to open the third quarter. The Blues continued to make hefty gains against WU, outscoring them 57-31 and suppressing WU’s offense. Whitman eventually passed the 100-point mark for the fifth time in the past seven games. The final score was 104-59. WU earned just over half of Whitman’s score.
Whitman improved to a 6-1 overall record, and 2-0 in the NWC. WU fell to 0-6 overall and 0-2 in the NWC. The Bearcats basketball teams will be playing another game on Thursday, Dec. 6 against our crosstown rival, Corban University. The game will be played on Corban’s campus in Salem, OR with the women’s tip-off set for 6 p.m and men’s for 8 p.m. (PST).