SPOKANE, Wash. - The Lewis & Clark men's basketball team battled strong in its Northwest Conference Tournament Semi-Final game against the #12 Whitworth Pirates. The Pirates proved to be too much for the Pioneers who fell 74-69.
The Pioneers end the season with a 16-10 record, while the Pirates improve to 23-3 overall.
Senior Dexter Pearce led the Pioneers with 19 points, hitting 5-of-9 from behind the three point arc. Freshman Serg Ovchinnikov was also solid from long distance, draining 5-of-7 for his 15 points. Senior Ross Erickson was the third Pioneer to finish in double-digits in scoring, finishing with 12, while collecting seven rebounds.
Wade Gebbers led all players with 22 points, while George Valle contributed 16 in the Pirate victory.
The game began with the Pirates taking a 10-4 advantage, before stretching their advantage to 20-9 with eight minutes gone. The Pioneers pulled themselves back into the game with a 13-7 seven run that sent them into halftime trailing 34-28.
After falling behind 39-33 in the opening minutes of the second half, the Pioneers went on a 9-0 run to earn their only lead of the game. Whitworth quickly responded with a run of its own to go up 51-43 with half the period remaining.
Lewis & Clark pulled the score to 70-67 with a little over a minute to go after a Connor Freeberg layup. The Pioneers remaining within three points of the Pirates with 13 seconds remaining but two Whitworth free-throws sealed the game.