Three Point Shooting Barage Leads Bearcats to 86-77 Win Over Bruins; Bearcats Finish Weekend Tied for First in NWC

SALEM, OR — CJ Stuvland scored 24 points and John Olinger added 15 second half points as the Willamette University men’s basketball team hit 12 of 16 3-point shots in defeating the George Fox Bruins 86-77 in a Northwest Conference game Saturday night at the Cone Filed House.

The Bearcats raised their season record to 11-5, 7-1 NWC and sit atop the conference standings along with UPS. George Fox is now 11-6 overall, 4-4 NWC. One night after being beat by the Bearcats, the No. 7 UPS Loggers squeaked by Linfield 79-75.

The Bearcats took a 37-30 half-time lead behind 12 first half points by Stuvland (pictured left). The Bruins cut the lead to 37-32 to start the second half before Olinger went to work. The senior captain banked in a 3-point shot, then assisted on Stuvland’s 3-pointer.

With the Bearcats now up 10, Olinger scored Willamette’s next seven points to push the lead to 54-41. David Fife’s lay-up put Willamette up 18 with 5:47 to play and the Bearcats coasted to their 5th straight win.

In the first half, the Bearcats jumped to a 7-2 lead, but the Bruins battled back to take a 17-14 lead on Chris Parker’s lay-up. Stuvland tied it with a 3-pointer and the teams traded baskets until late in the first half.

Drew Miller found Stuvland for another 3-pointer to put Willamette ahead, 25-23, then hit a jumper to push the lead to four. Ian Mansfield’s basket put Willamette up 29-25 before Miller assisted on a Fife 3-pointer and Jacob Baran scored down low for a 34-27 Bearcat lead.

Stuvland closed out the first half scoring with another 3-pointer and the Bearcats took a seven-point lead into the locker room, setting the stage for the second half shooting exhibition.

Four Bearcats scored in double figures, led by Stuvland’s 24 on 7-11 shooting (including 6-7 from beyond the arc). Olinger added 17 points, three assists and two rebounds, despite missing much of the first half with early foul trouble.

Miller had a team high five assists to go along with 15 points and four rebounds. Fife had ten points and four assists. Baran led the Bearcats in rebounding with seven. Mansfield had six boards and the Bearcats enjoyed a 31-25 rebounding edge.

Aaron Schmick’s 23 points, 17 from Brent Satern and 15 from Chris Parker led the Bruins.

The Bruins shot 50% from the field, but the Bearcats hit 29 of 49 shots to shoot just under 60%.

Willamette continues conference play at home on Tuesday night against Lewis and Clark. Tip-off is 8 p.m.

CJ Stuvland

CJ Stuvland