Whitman Battles Back in 76 - 73 Road Loss at George Fox
Date: January 12, 2013
Newberg, OR – The George Fox Bruins got a three-pointer from forward Sean Atkins with 10-seconds left in regulation to edge the Whitman Men's Basketball team 76 – 73 tonight at Miller Gymnasium, despite a 24 point 9 rebound effort from Whitman junior forward Ben Eisenhardt (Bainbridge Island, WA).
The loss drops the Missionaries to 3 – 3 in the NWC (3rd place at the time of posting) and 9 – 6 overall. The Bruins improve to 3 – 2 in conference (no lower than 2nd) and 7 – 6 on the season.
Eisenhardt hit two free-throws with 45.4 seconds remaining to tie the game at 73 – 73. George Fox came out of a timeout, ran its offense deep into the shot clock before finding Atkins in the corner who drained the jumper with a hand in his face. Whitman called timeout with 9-seconds showing on the clock. Point guard Josh Duckworth (Jr, Los Angeles, CA) couldn't get free for a shot on the perimeter and tried a pass to forward Drew Raher (Sr, San Francisco, CA) on the wing but the ball was deflected off of Raher with .5 seconds left in regulation. George Fox merely needed to inbound the ball to seal the victory.
Whitman trailed almost the entire game as the Bruins shot out of the gate, taking a double-digit advantage early in the first half, but the Missionaries chipped away and took the lead for the first time, 55 – 54, on two Eisenhardt free-throws with 12:58 remaining in the second half. "We showed great fight and heart getting back into the game after spotting George Fox 12 points to start", said Head Coach Eric Bridgeland.
The game was another tough loss for the Whitties, who played a double-overtime game Tuesday night in Spokane, and signaled the end of a four-game road stint – the team's most grueling stretch of the season. Coach Bridgeland commented afterwards about the physical drain, "Overall, we are tired. Four road games in four different cities in nine days took its toll."
The Missionaries, now, come back to the Sherwood Center for some home cooking as they host Linfield and Willamette Friday and Saturday, respectively. Tip-off for both games is at 8 pm.
In addition to Eisenhardt's offensive effort tonight, Whitman got 16 from Duckworth, and 10 off the bench from junior forward Ryan Gilkey (Woodinville, WA). George Fox had three players in double-digits: A.J. Grant with 19, Atkins with 17 and Anthony Sanchez with 13.
Both teams took good care of the ball. The Missionaries had only 10 turnovers – the Bruins 9.
Whitman Sports Information Director