Whitman Hits Shots in Second Half to Defeat Willamette, 66-49

Bearcats Compete without Injured Players Lamson, Wilson, Nordlien and Josephson

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Whitman College held a slim 30-26 lead at halftime, but the Missionaries shot 50.0% (14 of 28) in the second half to secure a 66-49 victory over Willamette University on Saturday, Jan. 21 at Cone Field House. Senior guard Jenele Peterson topped Whitman with 17 points, including 12 the second half.

The Missionaries upped their record to 10-7 overall, while advancing to 6-2 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette dropped to 1-16 overall, 0-8 in the NWC.

Jenele Peterson paced Whitman with 17 points and hit 8 of 14 field goal attempts. Kelly Peterson supplied an additional 15 points, while Meghan White earned 10 points for the Missionaries.

Julia Brand (Fr., Wing, Kaneohe, HI/Punahou School) was Willamette's leading scorer with 11 points. She hit 5 of 6 free throws during the game and also grabbed four

Willamette played without four injured players who typically receive playing time for the Bearcats. Out with injury were Mackenzie Lamson (So., Wing, Portland, OR/Lincoln HS), Sophie Wilson (Jr., G, Port Townsend, WA/Port Townsend HS), Katelyn Nordlien (Fr., Wing, Salem, OR/North HS) and Rebecca Josephson (So., Wing, Fair Oaks, CA/Del Campo HS).

Even so, WU kept up with the Missionaries in the first half. The Bearcats trailed by only one point, 14-13, after Brand put in a layup with 11:53 on the clock. WU pulled within one point two more times during the next several minutes, including 20-19 following two free throws by Jojo DeLong (Fr., PG, Santa Clarita, CA/Canyon HS) at the 8:36 mark.

The Missionaries led 23-21 with 7:49 to go in the half, before using a 7-0 run to take a 30-21 advantage with 2:23 left. Lovelace registered five of the points during the run. She scored on two jump shots and added a free throw when she was fouled on the second jumper.

WU concluded the half with a 5-0 run to cut the lead to four points. Daena Mau (Fr., Wing, Aiea, HI/Punahou School) hit her second 3-pointer of the half with 49 seconds to go. Brand added a layup with four seconds remaining to conclude a five-shot possession for the Bearcats that featured four offensive rebounds, including two by Maya McFaddin (Sr., Wing, McMinnville, OR/McMinnville HS).

Whitman opened the second 20-minute period with a 12-4 run that resulted in a 42-30 lead for the Missionaries as the clock reached 14:22. The run featured six points by White and four by Jenele Peterson. Willamette never got back within single digits.

The Missionaries eventually pulled out to a 57-33 lead at the 8:32 mark, but the Bearcats whittled the lead down to 14 points, 61-47, with 3:08 left.

WU's 14-4 run began and ended with a free throw by Kaileigh Westermann (Sr., F, Belfair, WA/South Kitsap HS). It also included two baskets by Dora Rabih (Sr., F, Denver, CO/John F. Kennedy HS/Arizona Western Coll.), one field goal each from McFaddin and DeLong, and 4 for 4 free throws by Brand.

Whitman scored five of the game's final seven points to attain the final margin.

For the game, Whitman shot 42.2% from the field (27 of 64), while holding Willamette to 27.9% (17 of 61) on field goals, including 11.8% (2 of 17) on 3-pointers. The Missionaries went 10 of 12 at the free throw line. Willamette sank 13 of 19 free throws.

Following Brand on the Bearcats' scoring chart were Rabih and McFaddin, each with eight points. Rabih also grabbed a game-high nine rebounds, while McFaddin hauled down seven boards. Willamette achieved a 45-37 rebounding margin.

The Missionaries earned 18 assists on 27 baskets. Jennifer Keyes led the way with five assists, while Kelly Peterson earned four, and Jenele Peterson and Mary Madden recorded three apiece. DeLong topped the Bearcats with five assists. Sarah Anderegg of Whitman earned a game-high four steals for Whitman.

Willamette's next game is set for Friday, Jan. 27 at the University of Puget Sound. Game time in Tacoma, Wash., is scheduled for 6 p.m. (PST).

Whitman College 66
Willamette University 49
Julia Brand led Willamette with 11 points against the Missionaries. She also grabbed four rebounds.

Julia Brand led Willamette with 11 points against the Missionaries. She also grabbed four rebounds.