Whitworth Rallies Past Willamette with Strong Second Half, 90-67

Westermann and McFaddin Each Score 13 Points for Bearcats

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

SPOKANE, WASH. -- Whitworth University exploded for 58 points in the second half, as the Pirates rallied from a 33-32 halftime deficit to defeat Willamette University, 90-67, in a Northwest Conference game on Saturday, Feb. 18. The Pirates placed four players in double figures, led by Lauren Picha, who achieved a game-high 16-points.

It was the final game of the season for both teams. Whitworth finished at 11-14 overall, including 7-9 in the NWC. Willamette ended the year with a 1-24 record, 0-16 in the NWC.

Willamette seniors Kaileigh Westermann (Sr., F, Belfair, WA/South Kitsap HS) and Maya McFaddin (Sr., Wing, McMinnville, OR/McMinnville HS) both provided double-digit scoring in their final game for the Bearcats with 13 points apiece.

McFaddin's scoring total was a career-high, as she went 4 for 8 from the field, including 2 for 2 on 3-pointers. Westermann, who led the Bearcats with seven rebounds, concluded her career with 746 points and 656 rebounds.

Westermann's rebounding total ranks second all-time for the Bearcats behind Jenny Joseph, who earned 695 boards from 1993-97.

Willamette's third senior, Dora Rabih (F, Denver, CO/John F. Kennedy HS/Arizona Western Coll.), tacked on eight points, went 4 for 5 on field goals and earned four assists.

Joining Picha in double figures for Whitworth were Kayla Johnson, Emily Guthrie and Lexi Belcher. Johnson earned 15 points, Guthrie contributed 14 and Belcher scored 12. Taylor Taylor led the Pirates with nine rebounds.

The first half featured six ties and six lead changes. Willamette took an a 9-3 lead in the opening 2:23 of play. Jojo DeLong (Fr., PG, Santa Clarity, CA/Canyon HS) provided seven of the nine points with a 3-pointer and two layups.

Whitworth went on a 9-2 run to take a 12-11 lead on a jump shot by Jamie Lyons at the 13:26 mark. The Bearcats countered with eight consecutive points for the largest lead by either team during the half at 19-12 with 10:36 on the clock. WU's 8-0 run featured jumpers from Rebecca Josephson (So., Wing, Fair Oaks, CA/Del Campo HS) and McFaddin followed by two layups from Westermann.

The Pirates surged again, using a 15-3 run to take a 27-22 advantage over the Bearcats with 4:33 left in the half. Five players scored for Whitworth during the run.

Willamette tallied the next five points for a 27-27 tie with 2:52 to go. Neither team led by more than a single point for the remainder of the half. A layup by Julia Brand (Fr., Wing, Kaneohe, HI/Punahou School) for the Bearcats at the 1:21 mark gave Willamette a 33-32 lead and the was the final basket of the half.

Statistics in the first half favored primarily the Bearcats. Willamette shot 59.1% from the field (13 of 22), including 2 of 3 from 3-point range. The Bearcats also hit 5 of 8 free throws (62.5%) and achieved a 19-15 rebounding margin.

Whitworth shot just 30.0% from the field (9 of 30) in the first 20 minutes, while making only 3 of 12 three-pointers. The Pirates shot more free throws as they hit 11 of 12 charity shots (91.7%) to offset Willamette's advantage on field goals. In addition, Whitworth attained a 13-7 edge in takeaways during the first half.

The Bearcats took a 38-35 lead in the first minute of the second half, using a 3-pointer by McFaddin and a layup by Rabih to offset a 3-pointer by Belcher of Whitworth just 13 seconds into the period.

It was Willamette's final lead of the game, as the Pirates scored seven consecutive points to take a 42-38 advantage with 16:09 remaining. Guthrie provided the final three points of the scoring streak with a 3-point basket.

Rabih put in a jumper on the the next possession for the Bearcats, but the Pirates tacked on an 11-0 run for a 53-40 edge with 12:19 to go. Picha tallied six of the 11 points. Later, Whitworth's lead reached 64-44 on a jumper by Jenna Cacchillo with 9:48 on the clock.

The Pirates improved their field goal shooting to 60.6% (20 of 33) in the second half. The increased accuracy included 7 of 11 shooting from 3-point range (63.6%). Whitworth matched its first-half performance at the line, hitting an additional 11 of 12 at the charity stripe.

For the game, Whitworth shot 46.0% (23 of 63) on field goals, including 43.5% (10 of 23) on 3-point attempts. The Pirates were 22 of 24 at the free throw line.

Willamette's shooting dipped to 37.0% in the second half (10 of 27). The Bearcats ended the game at 46.9% overall (23 of 49). Willamette finished at 3 of 6 on 3-pointers and 18 of 25 on free throws (72.0%).


Whitworth University 90
Willamette University 67

Senior wing Maya McFaddin scored 14 points on 4 of 8 shooting, including two 3-pointers.

Senior wing Maya McFaddin scored 14 points on 4 of 8 shooting, including two 3-pointers.