BB Men Win 5th Straight in Redlands Romp
News Release Date:
Thursday, December 30
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Ending the calendar year on a happy note, Whitman College chalked up its fifth straight men's basketball victory with a 88-65 romp past the University of Redlands Thursday evening in Redlands, Calif.
Whitman completed the non-conference portion of its schedule with a 7-2 record.
"Great win for our guys," Whitman coach Eric Bridgeland said. "To come into this environment with our third game in four days and have this kind of performance is what we've been working towards."
Thursday's loss was the fifth straight for Redlands, a member of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Redlands, now 2-9 on the season, has lost in recent weeks to NCAA Division I Pepperdine as well as Concordia (Irvine, Calif.), a nationally ranked NAIA school. Its most recent losses came at the hands of two NCAA Division III powers, undefeated Marrietta and 11-1 Chapman.
Whitman steadily pulled away from Redlands in the first half and held a 17-point lead at halftime. Sophomore Peter Clark hit a 3-pointer to open the second half, stretching Whitman's advantage to 53-33. He struck again from long range at the 15:07 mark to give the Missionaries their largest lead of the night at 61-57.
The Bulldogs drew no closer than 16 points the rest of way. Whitman led by 20 or more for the last eight minutes of the contest.
Freshman Josh Duckworth paced Whitman's offense with 19 points. Clark connected four times from the 3-point arc en route to 14 points. Senior Justin Artis added 12 points with 10 of those coming in the first half.
Whitman also got nine points and three steals from sophomore Ignas Pavilonis and eight points from junior Brandon Shaw. Sophomore Drew Raher added to the defense with three steals while junior David Michaels grabbed seven rebounds to spark the Missionaries to a 40-35 victory on the backboards.
Redlands held its only lead of the night at 5-4 two minutes into the first half. Pavilonis followed with two 3-pointers to vault Whitman into the lead for good.
Two baskets by Duckworth and one by Artis had Whitman in front 28-21 with less than eight minutes left in the half, but the Bulldogs responded with the next four points to stay close.
Inside of four minutes, Michaels finished a three-point play in the paint and Duckworth swished a pair of free throws for a 39-31 Whitman lead. The Missionaries then closed out the half with a flurry, getting 3-pointers from Raher, junior J.P. Alvarez and Clark to seize a 50-33 lead at the break.
Freshman Jordan Dickson also knocked down a pair of 3-pointers in the first half. Whitman finished the game with a 13-2 edge in 3-point baskets.
"Redlands did a very good job of taking away the paint from us," Bridgeland said. "It was nice to see our shooters answer the bell from the perimeter."
"Defensively, this was one of our best performances to date," he added. "Redlands is a very tough team to guard, but our guys were up to the challenge."
The Missionaries are home next weekend (Friday, Saturday) to host NWC rivals Puget Sound and Pacific Lutheran.
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; firstname.lastname@example.org