SPOKANE, Wash. – For the second game in a row, the Whitworth University women’s basketball team turned the ball over just six times, this time on the way to an 83-47 win over Willamette University in Northwest Conference action at Whitworth Fieldhouse on Friday evening.
Whitworth improved to 13-5 on the season, with a 7-2 NWC record. Willamette falls to 3-15 overall, with a 1-8 record in the NWC.
Willamette got the first lead of the game as Katie Kalugin hit a jumper to put the Bearcats up, but Whitworth responded quickly with eight unanswered points from seniors Kendra Lahue and Kayla Johnson and sophomore KC McConnell. Whitworth extended to a double digit lead with 13:32 left in the first half and a jumper from senior Jamie Lyons put the Pirates up by 35-14 with 4:50 left in the half. At the break, Whitworth led 42-22.
Willamette looked to cut the lead in the opening minutes of the second half, as Alexa Beeson and Katie Kalugin each had baskets that pulled the Bearcats within 18 points, but the Pirates responded to push the lead back up over 20 points and quieted Willamette. With 4:27 left to play, sophomore Lexie Zappone found junior Katara Belton-Sharp cutting to the basket, and Belton-Sharp laid in the easy bucket to put the Pirates up 75-42. Freshman McKenzie Harsin scored her third bucket of the season in the final 30 seconds, sealing Whitworth’s 83-47 win.
Whitworth shot 47.9 percent (35-73) for the game, and shot 48.6 percent (17-35) in the second half. The Pirates had four blocks and three steals in the game. Four of Whitworth’s six turnovers game in the first half.
Four Pirates scored in double figures, led by Kayla Johnson’s 13 points. Katara Belton-Sharp added 11 points, and Kendra Lahue and junior Jessica Kramer each chipped in 10 points. KC McConnell led the Pirates with 10 rebounds, and Jamie Lyons pulled down a season-high eight boards. Lexie Zappone dished out six assists.
Willamette was led by Katie Kalugin, who had 13 points and seven rebounds. Alexa Beeson added 12 points, while pulling down seven rebounds. Jojo DeLong dished out a team-high three assists, while Kalugin and Daena Mau each had two assists.
Whitworth hosts Pacific (Ore.) at 4:00 p.m. in Whitworth Fieldhouse on Saturday.