News release date: December 15, 1996

Whitman Men Win Best Western Classic;
Evan Jones Claims Tourney MVP Honors

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- With senior Evan Jones claiming Most Valuable Player honors, Whitman College outscored its two opponents 190 to 133 en route to winning the championship of the Best Western Classic men's basketball tournament, held Dec. 14-15 in Sherwood Center on the Whitman campus.

Whitman drubbed Okanogan University College (Kelowna, British Columbia) 102-73 in its opening-round game and then belted Menlo College (Atherton, Calif.) 88-60 in the tourney title game. The two victories pushed Whitman's season record to 4-2.

Jones, a 6-foot-6 post player, scored 37 points, hitting 15 of 27 shots from the floor, in his two tournament games. He also grabbed 35 rebounds and blocked four shots.

Whitman's Tommy Lloyd, a 6-foor-4 senior, also made the all-tournament team. He scored 42 points in the two games, connecting on 14 of 29 shots from the floor. He was 10 of 18 from the 3-point stripe and a perfect four-for-four from the foul line. He also had seven rebounds and four steals.

Others named to the all-tournament team were Terry Blankenship of Walla Walla College, Michael Barton of Menlo College, and Tyler Thompson of Okanogan.

Blankenship, a 5-10 sophomore guard, led all scorers in the tournament with 48 points. He also grabbed 22 rebounds, picked off 18 steals and handed out 11 assists.

Barton, a 6-2 junior forward, finished the tournament with 33 points, 15 rebounds and seven steals. Thompson, a 6-5 senior forward, totaled 31 points and 12 rebounds in the tourney.

Other Whitman players who enjoyed a strong tournament included:

CONTACT: Dave Holden, Whitman Sports Information, (509) 527-5902
Email Address: holden@whitman.edu