TACOMA, Wash. – Ben College scored 18 of his game-high 22 points in the second half to lead 13th-ranked Whitworth to a 95-84 Northwest Conference win at previously-unbeaten Puget Sound on Friday night at Memorial Fieldhouse.
Jordan Lester added 20 points for the Pirates, who improved to 6-0 overall and 1-0 in the NWC. Jimmy Wohrer scored a game-high 25 points for the Loggers, who fell to 6-1, 0-1.
Puget Sound led for most of the first half, jumping out to a quick 6-0 lead. The Loggers still had a 26-20 lead with just under ten to play after a Wohrer three-pointer and led 34-28 following a Nate Vieira layup. But Garrett Hull's three-pointer gave Whitworth a 37-36 lead, its first of the game. The Pirates went into halftime ahead 45-44.
College showed he was ready to play a better second half when he drained a three-pointer on his first shot attempt after halftime. Puget Sound took the lead for a final time when Gabriel Chaikin's three-pointer knotted the score at 54-54 and Stellan Roberts followed with a layup. Whitworth answered with a 7-0 run, including a dunk by Ben Bishop and four points by Jared Christy, to go ahead 61-56.
Leading 71-69 with seven minutes to play, the Pirates built separation with an 11-4 run, sparked by a Kyle Roach three-pointer. Whitworth eventually built a 12-point lead with just over two minutes to play.
College and Lester led a group of five Pirates who reached double figures in scoring. Bishop totaled 17 points while Christy added 16. Hull came off of the bench for ten. Roach totaled eight points, nine rebounds and six assists. Lester added six assists and four steals.
Whitworth shot 55% from the field, thanks mostly to 22 assists on 33 made baskets. After committing 13 turnovers in the first half against the full-court Puget Sound defense, the Pirates only had seven more after halftime.
Vieira added 11 points and Jeremiah Hobbs had ten for the Loggers. Puget Sound made only 38% of its shots from the floor.
Whitworth has won 20 games in a row against the Loggers. The Bucs will conclude their trip to Tacoma with a game at Pacific Lutheran on Saturday night at 6:00 pm.