SPOKANE, Wash. - Wade Gebbers scored a career-high 25 points to lead Whitworth to an 88-66 win over visiting Washington University of St. Louis in a non-conference men's basketball game on Sunday afternoon at the Whitworth Fieldhouse.
The Pirates, ranked 12th in the D3hoops.com preseason poll, improved to 2-0 while the Bears (2-1) suffered their first loss of the season.
Gebbers made four of his career-high seven three-point shots in the first half to help Whitworth rally back from an early 13-7 deficit. He made two of those back to back during an 18-0 run midway through the opening half that gave Whitworth a 25-13 advantage. After WUSTL got back within 30-19 on a pair of free throws by Chris Klimek, the Pirates used a 13-2 spurt to open their largest lead of the half at 43-21 with just over two minutes to play in the period.
Whitworth took a 50-29 lead into the locker rooms after shooting 58% (15-26) in the first half, including 50% (8-16) from three-point range. Meanwhile the Pirate defense held the Bears to only 29% (10-34) shooting in the opening half, 17% (1-6) from beyond the arc.
Any chance of a comeback evaporated in the opening minutes of the second half as Whitworth used an 11-0 run, including three more three-pointers by Gebbers, to open up a 61-29 lead with just over 17 minutes to play.
Gebbers finished the game 7-10 from behind the arc and 9-12 from the floor. His previous career high point total was 20 set last season at Whitman. Idris Lasisi added 18 points and dished five assists, while Felix Friedt scored 17 points and grabbed seven rebounds for the Pirates.
Whitworth kept the hot shooting going in the second half and finished the game by making 54% from the floor and 52% (13-25) from three-point range.
Klimek led WUSTL with 12 points, while Alex Toth added eight points and seven rebounds. The Bears made 34% of their shots in the game, 20% (3-15) from beyond the arc.
Coming up: Whitworth will travel to Northern California for the Thanksgiving weekend to participate in the NWC-SCIAC challenge at Diablo Valley College. The Pirates will take on Cal Lutheran on Friday and Chapman on Saturday. Both games are scheduled to tip off at 10:00 a.m.
Notes: Washington's Hall of Fame coach Mark Edwards was an assistant coach at nearby Washington State from 1972-81 before taking over as head coach of the Bears. He has 544 wins at WUSTL in his 31st year... Whitworth first-year coach Matt Logie is now 2-0... This was the second meeting between the schools. Washington defeated Whitworth at home 63-61 in the second round of the NCAA Division III tournament in 2007 on the way to the final four... The Bears won back to back NCAA Division III championships in 2008 and 2009... Whitworth extended its home court winning streak to 39 games in a row dating to the 2008-09 season... The Pirates have now won 22 straight home games against non-conference opponents, dating back to the 2001-02 season.