Dec 31, 2012

LEWIS & CLARK 80, GEORGE FOX 68: Bruins Fall to Pios in Battle of Ranked NWC Teams

A Winning Tradition

  • NCAA D-III National Champions (2009)
  • Three NCAA "Final Four" appearances (2009, 2012, 2015)
  • Six NCAA "Elite 8" appearances (2005, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015)
  • Nine NCAA "Sweet 16" appearances (2000, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016)
  • 14 NCAA National Tournament appearances in 18 years (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • 12 Northwest Conference Championships (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018)
  • 25 straight winning seasons (1994-2018)
  • 14 Top 25 national rankings (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Three NCAA Division III National Coaches of the Year
  • Six NCAA Division III Region Coaches of the Year
  • 11 Conference Coaches of the Year
  • 20 All-Americans
  • One Academic All-American
  • Three Ad Rutschman Small College Athlete of the Year Finalists (Justine Benner - 2015, Keisha Gordon - 2012, Katy Campbell - 2008)
  • One Ad Rutschman Small College Athlete of the Year Winner (Kristen Shielee - 2009)
  • One George Fox Pasero Team of the Year (2009)
  • One Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year Award (Scott Rueck - 2009 finalist)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Despite five players scoring in double figures, too many turnovers and too many free throws allowed put the George Fox University Bruins into too deep a hole to climb out of as the Lewis & Clark College Pioneers ran off with an 80-68 win in Northwest Conference women’s basketball action Monday night here at the Pamplin Sports Center.

George Fox, ranked 21st in the latest NCAA Division III poll and 22nd in the WBCA poll, saw its eight-game winning streak snapped in falling to 8-3 overall and 1-1 in the conference.  The setback ended a six-game winning streak for the Bruins against the Pioneers and also stopped their 31-game winning string against NWC teams.  Lewis & Clark, which is ranked sixth in both national polls, improved to 11-0 overall and 2-0 in the league.

Dacia Heckendorf hit a three-pointer for the Bruins 18 seconds into the game to give the visitors a 3-0 lead, but it was the only edge they would have.  A free throw by Kristina Williams and a three by Casey Zinn made it 4-3 Pioneers with 18:44 to go in the half, and they led the rest of the game.  Two free throws by Katie Anderson gave the Pios their first double-digit lead of 19-9 with 13:16 left, and they stretched it to 23-10 with 11:10 to play on a layup by Tayler Wang, who had 17 first-half points.

The Bruins responded with a 9-0 run over the next three minutes on a layup by Hannah Munger, a three-play by Nicole Blizzard, and baskets by McKenzie Wolfe and Blizzard that made it 23-19 at the 8:08 mark.  Two free throws by Wang ended the Bruins’ streak and ignited a 23-7 run to the end of the period that gave the Pios a huge 46-26 halftime bulge.  Lewis & Clark hit 18-of-20 from the free throw line in the half to only 5-of-10 for George Fox and made 11 steals in forcing 15 Bruin turnovers.

The Pioneers maintained a comfortable lead throughout the first nine minutes of the second half, eventually building a 25-point margin of 63-38 with 10:55 left as Wang was fouled on a three-point attempt and sank all three freebies.  A layup by Munger started the Bruins’ last-ditch effort at a comeback, and with Jami Roos nailing a pair of three-pointers and Megan Hays canning 6-of-6 from the line, George Fox out-scored Lewis & Clark 24-9 over a five-minute span to close within 10 at 72-62 with 5:31 left.

Roos fouled out moments later, however, and the Bruins were forced to foul in their bid to catch up.  The Pios scored their final eight points on free throws, including 6-of-6 by Sara Villanueva, to hold off the Bruins, who got no closer that eight in the final minutes at 76-68 with 1:06 left on a trey by Hayley Cusick.

Neither team shot particularly well, the Bruins making 23-62 (.371) and the Pios 21-58 (.362) from the field.  At the line, however, the Pios cashed in 36-of-43 (.837) while the Bruins struggled with a 16-of-25 (.640) night.  George Fox held a 48-36 advantage in rebounds, but wound up with 28 turnovers in the game to 19 for the home team, which made 16 steals.

Munger, the Bruins’ 6-5 All-American center, posted her first double-double of the season and 41st of her career with 14 points and 11 rebounds, and also blocked three shots to raise her total to 348, which is 15th all-time in Division III.  Megan Arnoldy had her second double-double with 10 points and 10 boards, while Cusick, Blizzard, and Hays each scored 10.  Cusick made four steals, and Heckendorf handed out six assists.

Wang led all scorers with 24 points for the Pios, including 9-9 from the line, and Villanueva added 20, going 10-10 from the stripe.  Williams added 14 points and had a double-double with 11 rebounds, while Anderson scored 12.  Villanueva passed out four assists, and Williams and Anderson made four steals each.

NEXT: George Fox visits Linfield College and Lewis & Clark hosts Whitman College Friday for conference games, both starting at 6:00 p.m.  Men’s NWC games will follow each at 8:00 p.m.