Turnover battle results in Pioneers loss to nation’s No. 1

Turnover battle results in Pioneers loss to nation’s No. 1

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Starter Nico Bricker dropped 17 points this Friday night while the Pioneers put up a tough fight against top-ranked Whitman but lost 74-60. 

It was a fast paced first half in tonight's contest with Lewis & Clark putting up 22 shots and Whitman with 30. Neither team had a good field-goal percentage both only making nine of their attempts and only one 3-pointer. The Pios had a 15-17 lead halfway through the first half but in the eighth minute, Whitman was able to make an 9-0 run to take the lead 24-17. Lewis & Clark also allowed 14 turnover to Whitman's six which helped the Blue's take a 32-24 lead at the end of the first half.

In the second half Lewis & Clark showed some life keeping up with Whitman by answering point for point and staying within a seven point difference. Kyle Owens dished out a nice assist to Bricker after beating his defender in the 15 minute which gave the Pioneers some spark to get back in the game. Unfortunately the Pios hit three 3-pointers in the second half which stopped a couple of Whitman's runs but the Blues' pace was too fast for the Pios. This is the second time the Pios have only made four 3-point shots in a game this season, the last time was on Nov 25 against No.12 North Central. 

"We were with them the whole way..." said Andrew Panicacci "but it is a game of runs. They took over and defended better than we did and that is why they came out on top tonight."

Lewis & Clark shot 46% in field-goals with 13 assists and 36 points in the paint but their 22 turnovers allowed Whitman 31 points off turnovers and the win. 

Andrew Vickers was the leading rebounder tonight with 10 and five points while Zeke Crawford had 14 points and six rebounds. 

The Pioneers will be playing at Pamplin Sports Center Saturday night to continue their stretch of home games against the Whitworth Pirates. The contest will begin at 6 p.m. Lewis & Clark has five games left in their season with their last one being at home against Puget Sound.