Whit BB Women Eye Weekend Sweep, Split
WALLA WALLA, Wash. — Nailing down one season sweep and avoiding another is on the agenda this weekend when the Whitman College women start the second half of the Northwest Conference basketball slate with a pair of games in Sherwood Center .
Whitman, 10-7 on the season and 4-4 in the NWC, hopes to sidestep a sweep when first-place Lewis & Clark (13-4, 7-1) comes to town on Friday.
Last month in Portland, Lewis & Clark scored the last seven points to subdue Whitman 62-55. The Missionaries need to win Friday's rematch to forge a season split between the two schools for a fifth straight year.
Whitman has had much better luck in recent years against Linfield, Saturday's opponent. The Missionaries have won the last seven meetings between the two schools, including last month's 65-55 triumph in McMinnville, Ore.
Before coming to Walla Walla on Saturday, Linfield takes records of 9-7 and 4-4 to Spokane to play Whitworth on Friday.
This weekend's two games start at 6 p.m.
Friday's contest is Whitman's annual "Bring A Girl" to the game event. Flyers have been distributed to students in Walla Walla and College Place that are good for free admission for any family that brings a girl to the game.
A raffle is also planned for Friday's game, and two school teams from Walla Walla will scrimmage at halftime.
The Whitman women, riding a two-game win streak, continue to field a rotation that mixes a handful of veterans with contributions from a deep crop of first-year players.
Jenele Peterson, a junior guard, ranks among the league leaders in scoring (13.5 ppg), assists (2.82 apg) and free throw shooting (80.5 percent).
Jennifer Keyes, also a junior guard, is scoring 9.6 points per game while shooting 46.6 percent (30-73) from the 3-point line. She is No. 2 in the NWC in 3-point accuracy and No. 4 in 3-point baskets per game.
First-year forward Sarah Anderegg (9.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg) has converted 62 of 72 free throw attempts, the second-best percentage in the conference.
Senior center Rebecca Sexton (8.1 ppg, 4.8 rpg) is No. 3 in the NWC in field goal percentage, having made 54 of 99 shots from the floor (54.5 percent). She is fifth in blocked shots with 18 in 17 games.
Othe key contributors include sophomore guard Kelly Peterson (7.7 ppg, 4.4 rpg), junior guard Anna Forge (5.2 ppg, 5.0 rpg) and sophomore forward Mary Madden (4.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg). Forge is No. 2 in the NWC in blocked shots with 21 rejections.
First-year guards Catelyn Webber and Tiffani Brewer give the Missionaries two more 3-point threats.
As a team, Whitman tops the NWC in assist-to-turnover ratio and ranks second, third or fourth in scoring offense and defense, free throw percentage, field goal percentage, field goal defense, 3-point percentage, rebounding margin, blocked shots and assists.
Lewis & Clark Pioneers
In last month's game in Portland, Whitman scored the first five points of the second half to take a 35-30 lead. After Keyes hit her fourth 3-pointer to forge a 55-55 deadlock with two minutes left in the game, Lewis & Clark ticked off the last seven points to nail down the victory.
Keyes finished with 16 points and six rebounds. Kelly Peterson added 15 points and five boards while Jenele Peterson added 13 points, five boards and two steals. Forge had seven points, six rebounds and four blocks.
Kristina Williams, a 5-foot-9 guard, paced the Pioneers with 15 points and four rebounds. On the season, Williams is No. 2 in the NWC in scoring at 17.2 points per game; she also averages 5.9 rebounds and a league-high 4.35 assists.
Megan Spence, a 6-foot junior, combined 10 points and 10 rebounds in the win over Whitman. Margaret Dowling, a 5-foot-11 junior, added 11 rebounds in that game. Spence is averaging 11.4 points and 7.0 rebounds while Dowling's numbers include 6.9 rebounds and 6.1 points per game.
After getting past Whitman in early December, Lewis & Clark dropped a two-point non-conference decision to Chapman. Since then, the Pioneers have won nine straight games.
While Whitman finished with a 10-point victory over Linfield last month in western Oregon, the victory was anything but easy. The Missionaries led by three at halftime and were unable to shake free until the closing minutes.
Jenele Peterson made three of four 3-point attempts and all six of her free throws for a team-high 17 points to spark the victory over Linfield. Anderegg chipped in with 11 points and five rebounds. Kelly Peterson and Forge added nine and eight points, respectively, while Sexton had six points and six rebounds.
Gretchen Owens, a 5-foot-10 junior, led the Wildcats with 24 points and five rebounds. Kaely Maltman, a 5-foot-11 first-year forward, posted a double-double with 13 points and 10 boards.
Owens tops the conference in scoring, averaging 19.8 points along with 7.1 rebounds. Maltman (11.6 ppg, 5.5 rpg) and 5-foot-5 junior Micha Pringle (10.7 ppg) round out the Wildcat top three.
Linfield is 3-3 since NWC play resumed early this month.
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; email@example.com