BB Men Bomb Bearcats for 7th Straight Win
News Release Date:
Saturday, February 12
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Winning its seventh straight game for the first time since the 1985-86 season, the Whitman College men's basketball team continued to sizzle with a runaway 119-77 drubbing of Willamette Saturday night in Sherwood Center.
Whitman, now 17-6 on the season and 10-4 in the Northwest Conference, remains tied with Lewis & Clark for second place in the league standings.
The Missionaries, winning for the 15th time in their last 17 games, host No. 1-ranked Whitworth at 8 p.m. Tuesday and then finish the regular season at Pacific (Forest Grove, Ore.) next Friday.
The Bearcats (6-17, 3-11 NWC) had no chance against a jazzed Whitman team that lit up the scoreboard with 62 first-half points, making 19 of 27 shots from the floor (70.4 percent) and 18 of 22 free throws.
Justin Artis, who was honored prior to the game as Whitman's lone senior, sparked the rampage by hitting four of five shots from the floor, including a pair of 3-pointers, en route to 14 points in the first 20 minutes of play.
Sophomore Ignas Pavilonis added 12 points before the break, connecting on all five of his first-half shots, including a pair of threes. Freshman Josh Duckworth was also in double figures with 10 points by halftime, going four for four from the floor in the process.
Juniors David Michaels (eight points, five rebounds) and Brandon Shaw (eight points, five assists), along with sophomore Drew Raher (six points, four rebounds), also had active hands in the Missionary blitz.
The second half was more of the same as Whitman stretched its lead to 42 points with nine minutes still left in the game.
Artis finished with 23 points, matching his season high, before leaving the game to a standing ovation with 3:39 left to play.
Duckworth also tallied 23 points, his season high, and added four steals and four assists while Shaw wound up with 19 points and seven assists.
Other Missionaries scoring in double digits were Pavilonis with 15 points, Michaels with 12 and Raher with 10 points and seven boards. Freshman Ryan Gilkey finished with eight points.
Ryan Meehan with 21 points and Taylor Mounts with 18 led the Bearcat offense. Robbie Kunke added eight points and handed out five assists to become the all-time career assist leader at Willamette.
Whitman shot 63.3 percent from the floor for the game, which included a 17 of 29 showing (58.6 percent) from the 3-point line. Artis, who struck five times from the 3-point line, was one of seven Missionaries with at least one 3-pointer.
Whitman outboarded Willamette 35-24 and pestered the Bearcats into 21 turnovers.
Saturday's victory gave Whitman its second consecutive season sweep of Willamette. The Missionaries won earlier this season in Salem by a 74-69 count.
Willamette, which ended the weekend with records of 3-18 and 3-11, plays at Pacific Lutheran next Friday and then ends its season Saturday with a home game against Lewis & Clark.
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; firstname.lastname@example.org