DECATUR, Ill. -- The second half has not been kind to the Whitworth women's basketball team this season. That was the case again on Saturday afternoon as Wisconsin-Whitewater outscored the Pirates 45-26 after halftime on the way to an 80-57 win at the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic hosted by Millikin College.
In three games this season Whitworth (0-3) has been outscored by an average of 13 points in the second half.
But senior Lexi Belcher continues to play well for the Pirates. She led the team with a game-high 18 points against Whitewater. She made 6 of 12 from the field and also grabbed six boards.
After the Warhawks jumped to an early 22-10 lead in the first half, Whitworth fought back to within 22-15 on a basket by Jamie Lyons. Lauren Picha's jumper just before the first half ended got the Bucs within 35-31, the closest the team had been since the opening moments of the game.
When Picha drained a three-pointer just over two minutes into the second half, Whitworth appeared poised to upset UWW after pulling within 37-36. But the Warhawks outscored the Pirates 11-1 over the next two minutes to open up a 48-37 lead. UWW soon stretched the advantage to 67-47 with just under ten minutes to play and Whitworth would not be able to threaten the lead again.
For the second straight game the Pirates struggled from behind the arc, making only 25% (5-20) of their attempts. Picha finished with ten points, while Kayla Johnson added seven points, 10 rebounds and three assists.
Cortney Kumerow led UWW (2-0) with 15 points, while Mary Merg added 14 points.
Whitworth will return to action on Wednesday, Nov. 23 at Evergreen State.