SPOKANE – Taylor Farnsworth led five Whitworth players in double figures as the 3rd-ranked Pirates rolled to an 89-70 win over visiting Lewis & Clark in a Northwest Conference men’s basketball game on Friday night.
Whitworth improved to 19-1 overall and 11-0 in the NWC with its 19th straight victory. The Pioneers saw their six game winning streak come to an end and fell to 13-7, 7-4.
“We really focused on tightening up our execution this week in practice and our guys carried it over well to the game,” said Whitworth head coach Matt Logie.
Farnsworth helped the Pirates rebound from a slow start by making all seven of his field goal attempts in the first half for 14 of his game-high 22 points. Dexter Pierce helped the visitors jump to an early lead by making his first four attempts from the three-point line. One of those gave L&C a 13-8 lead, its largest of the game. After the Pirates pulled into a 20-17 lead on a Wade Gebbers jumper, Pierce hit back-to-back treys to give the Pioneers their final lead of the game at 23-20 with twelve minutes to go in the half.
But Whitworth would outscore L&C 26-10 the rest of the first period. Colton McCargar got hot off of the bench, hitting three three-pointers of his own to spark the Bucs to the strong finish to the first period. Whitworth blistered the nets for 74% (20-27) in the first half and outrebounded L&C 14-5.
The Pirates opened the second half with a 9-4 run to grab a 55-37 advantage on a Gebbers three-pointer. Lewis & Clark never threatened after that as Whitworth opened several leads of 20+ points over the rest of the half.
Farnsworth finished the game 10-12 from the field and 2-2 from the free throw line for his 22 points. McCargar finished with 16 points while George Valle scored 11 of his 13 points in the second half. Dustin McConnell finished with 11 and Zach Payne scored ten. Whitworth cooled off only a little in the second half, finishing the game with a 64% shooting percentage (35-55) from the field.
“Our offensive efficiency tonight was the best of the season so far,” Logie said. “Taylor was terrific on the inside and that just opened so many things up for other players. Colton again came in again and gave us an offensive spark as did Zach.”
Pearce led L&C with 17 points and James Hollins scored 14. Whitworth controlled the boards, outrebounding the Pioneers 35-17.
The Pirates will try to pick up their 20th victory in a row and clinch at least a tie for the Northwest Conference championship when they host Pacific on Saturday night.