Bruins Defuse Men's BB Comeback Effort
News Release Date:
Friday, December 2
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- After digging itself a hole 19 feet deep in the first half, Whitman College fell a few feet short of scrambling back to the surface in dropping a 57-48 men's basketball decision to George Fox Friday night in Sherwood Center.
Down 38-19 at halftime, Whitman opened the second stanza on a 14-0 run to crawl back into contention into what was the Northwest Conference opener for both schools.
Junior Peter Clark drilled a 3-pointer to cap that run, trimming Whitman's deficit to 38-35 with 12:32 left to play.
The Bruins scored their first points of the second half when Sean Atkins hit a jumper with 11:35 remaining to give George Fox a bit of breathing room and a 40-35 lead.
But Whitman, now 3-2 on the season, kept up the pressure and drew within two points at 43-41 when senior Brandon Shaw scored at the hoop with nearly nine minutes left.
The game started to turn back in favor of George Fox when Corey Clark grabbed an offensive rebound and fed Jon Adrian for a 3-point strike.
After Adrian hit again from long distance, Cam Rier put back a missed 3-point try by one of his teammates, extending the George Fox back into double digits at 51-41 at the 5:43 mark.
Junior David Michaels countered with two free throws and then scored on an offensive rebound, shrinking the Whitman deficit back to six points with five minutes left.
But the Missionaries misfired twice on their next possession, and the Bruins scored the next six points to pull away.
Mike Taylor sparked George Fox, now 2-3 on the season, with 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists. Atkins finished with 13 points and six boards while Adrian combined 10 points with four rebounds.
Michaels led Whitman with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore guard Josh Duckworth just missed a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds.
Shaw chipped in with nine points and four boards, and senior D.J. Wright picked off seven rebounds to help Whitman post a 46-36 victory on the backboards.
The Bruins hit 16 of 30 field goal attempts (53.3 percent) in building their big first-half lead, but then shot just 26.1 percent over the final 20 minutes.
Whitman sharpened its shooting eye to fuel its second-half rally but still finished at 30.6 percent for the game.
Whitman's big run to start the second half included two Duckworth layups, two free throws by sophomore LuQuam Thompson and a 3-point bucket from junior Drew Raher.
The Missionaries return to Sherwood Center at 8 p.m. Saturday to host Lewis & Clark.
George Fox is in Spokane Saturday for at 8 p.m. game against Whitworth.
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; firstname.lastname@example.org