Strong First Half Sends Whitman to 83-65 Victory over Willamette

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

WALLA WALLA, WASH. -- Whitman College built a 40-24 halftime lead on its way to an 83-65 victory over visiting Willamette University, in a Northwest Conference game on Saturday, Feb. 12. Whitman improved to 13-10, including 7-7 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette dropped to 3-18 overall, 2-12 in the NWC.

Jenele Peterson led Whitman with 15 points and was one of three Missionaries with seven rebounds, helping Whitman achieve a 58-34 rebounding margin. Anna Forge added 12 points and seven boards, while Kelly Peterson contributed 11 points and also grabbed seven rebounds. Rebecca Sexton scored eight points and led all players with three blocked shots.

For Willamette, Erin Barclay (Sr., G, Snohomish, WA/Bothell HS) tallied 14 points, was credited with five rebounds and went 8 for 10 at the free throw line. Shayna Glynn (Sr., F, Boise, ID/Capital HS/Walla Walla CC) and Kaileigh Westermann (Jr., F, Belfair, WA/South Kitsap HS) scored 11 points apiece for the Bearcats. Westermann also hauled down eight boards.

The Missionaries led 10-2 with 14:26 left in the first half and held a 25-8 advantage following a pair of free throw by Forge at the 7:44 mark. After struggling on field goals for most of the half, Willamette started to find its shooting touch and outscored Whitman, 16-15, to close out the period.

MacKenzie Lamson (Fr., F, Portland, OR/Lincoln HS), Barclay and Maya McFaddin (Jr., F, McMinnville, OR/McMinnville HS) each sank a 3-pointer for the Bearcats in the final seven minutes of the half.

Whitman led 40-24 at halftime, but outscored the Bearcats by just two points in the second half, 43-41. The Bearcats tallied the first four points after the intermission to cut the lead to 12, but Whitman used a 11-2 run to increase its advantage to 51-30 with 16:29 to go.

Even so, the Bearcats gradually battled back. Willamette trailed by 13 points with 13:05 left, and cut the deficit to nine, 61-52, when Westermann sank a jump shot with 7:40 remaining. The Missionaries scored the next eight points, including two baskets by Janele Peterson, to push the lead to 69-52 at the 4:38 mark.

Willamette shot just 28.6% from the field (18 of 63), while making 23 of 38 free throws (60.5%). The Missionaries shot 42.9% (27 of 63) and sank 24 of 27 free throws (88.9%).

Willamette will return to action on Friday, Feb. 18 at Pacific Lutheran University. Game time in Tacoma, Wash., is slated for 6 p.m. (PST).

Whitman College 83
Willamette University 65
Erin Barclay led Willamette with 14 points. She grabbed five rebounds and was 8 for 10 on free throws.

Erin Barclay led Willamette with 14 points. She grabbed five rebounds and was 8 for 10 on free throws.