Missionaries go up big early, hang on against Yellowjackets

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LAS VEGAS — Having won their last four games, it would be fair to say the Whitman College Missionaries were on a roll heading into their D3hoops.com Classic contest against the UW-Superior men’s basketball team Saturday night.

And the Missionaries showed no intentions of halting their hot streak against the Yellowjackets, taking control of matters early before holding off a furious UW-Superior rally in a 96-88 victory at South Point Arena in Las Vegas.

The Yellowjackets shot well from the field, knocking down 59.6 percent of their shots (31-of-52), including going an impressive 9-of-13 from three-point range. But UW-Superior also committed 26 turnovers in dropping to 4-7 on the season. Whitman, meanwhile, improved to 5-3 with the victory.

The Yellowjackets found themselves trailing from the get-go as an Evan Martin free throw, a three-pointer and layup by Matt Mounier and another three-point shot by Dominic Lippi allowed the Missionaries to jump out to a 9-1 lead with 17:59 remaining in the opening half.

UW-Superior came back to within four at 11-7 with 15:52 left thanks to two baskets from Jarrod Peterson and a short jumper by Zach Schradle .

Whitman took command for the remainder of the half however, going on two extended runs thanks to 17 first-half turnovers by the Yellowjackets and 50 percent shooting from the floor to take a commanding 60-33 lead into halftime following two free throws by Jackson Clough with 11 seconds remaining in the half.

Mounier paced the Missionaries’ big first half, scoring 16 points while knocking down 3-of-4 from three-point range in the frame.

The Yellowjackets started strong early in the second half, rallying to within 62-43 behind eight quick points from Schradle and an inside score from Bronson Byrne with 16:45 left in regulation.

Peterson then connected on a three-pointer with 15:50 left to bring UW-Superior to within 62-46.

But the Missionaries went on to score the next seven points, upping the margin to 69-46 on a Mounier basket with 14:07 showing on the clock.

Burch’s third three-pointer of the night made it an 85-78 contest with 3:11 remaining in regulation.

A Byrne free throw with 22 seconds left brought the Yellowjackets even closer at 94-88.

The Missionaries responded however, getting two free throws from Mounier with 19 seconds left to provide the final margin of victory for Whitman.

Mounier led all scorers with 30 points for Whitman. Martin added 13 while Tochi Oti and Josh Duckworth each had 11 and Philip Chircu 10 for the Missionaries.

WHITMAN 96, UW SUPERIOR 88

UW SUPERIOR (88) — Schradle 7-12 3-6 18, Peterson 5-6 5-8 16, Byrne 4-8 3-5 11, Corry 3-8 0-0 7, Lindblom 2-4 1-4 5, Burch 5-6 1-1 14, Scott 3-6 1-4 10, Denny 1-1 1-2 3, Woods 0-0 2-2 2, Mattison 1-1 0-0 2, Williams 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 31-52 17-32 88.

WHITMAN (96) — Mounier 7-16 11-12 30, Martin 4-5 5-6 13, Duckworth 5-12 0-2 11, Lippi 1-8 2-2 5, Callahan 0-2 0-0 0, Oti 4-10 2-4 11, Chircu 3-3 2-2 10, Hays 3-3 2-3 8, Thompson 2-6 0-0 4, Clough 1-3 2-2 4, Wade 0-0 0-0 0, Durham 0-0 0-0 0, Gagliardi 0-1 0-2 0. Totals 30-69 26-35 96.

Halftime — Whitman 60-33. 3-point goals — UWS 9-13 (Schradle 1-2, Peterson 1-1, Corry 1-1, Lindblom 0-1, Burch 3-4, Scott 3-4), Whitm 10-25 (Mounier 5-10, Duckworth 1-2, Lippi 1-6, Callahan 0-1, Oti 1-2, Chircu 2-2, Clough 0-1, Gagliardi 0-1). Total fouls — UWS 26, Whitm 30. Fouled out — UWS (Peterson, Lindblom), Whitm (Duckworth, Lippi). Technical fouls — UWS (Peterson). Rebounds — UWS 40 (Byrne 11), Whitm 33 (Hays 6). Turnovers — UWS 26, Whitm 13. Assists — UWS 14 (Lindblom 4), Whitm 12 (Mounier 3, Duckworth 3, Callahan 3).

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