You don’t often get a chance to play the top-ranked NCAA Division III men’s basketball team in the country.
But that is what was in front of Pacific Lutheran University on Friday night.
The Lutes were picked apart by No. 1 Whitworth’s hot shooting, led by Kenny Love’s 20 points as the Pirates won 93-62 at Whitworth Fieldhouse in Spokane.
Whitworth (16-0, 7-0 Northwest Conference) tallied the game’s first nine points – seven coming from Love – in grabbing an easy victory. The Pirates shot 55.7 percent from the floor, making 34 of 61 field-goal attempts.
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Bryce Miller led PLU (10-6, 3-4) with 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting.
At Whitman 102, UPS men 76: Five Missionaries scored in double figures, led by the 17 apiece from Austin Butler and Christian McDonald, and 16th-ranked Whitman took care of the Loggers in Walla Walla.
UPS (9-7. 4-3 in NWC) led for much of the first half, grabbing a 10-3 lead on Matt Reid’s 3-pointer. But Whitman broke away on a 7-0 run later in the half.
UPS 68, at Whitman 60: Emily Sheldon and Samone Jackson tallied 21 points apiece, and the Loggers moved into a three-way for second place with a victory in Walla Walla.
Puget Sound (10-6, 5-2 NWC) started the fourth quarter on a 10-0 run to break open a tight game – starting with 3-pointers by Elizabeth Prewitt and Sheldon.
At Whitworth 66, PLU 39: The Lutes were held to their lowest scoring output of the season in a lopsided loss in Spokane.
Faith Emeron led Whitworth with 18 points. Ionna Price’s nine points paced PLU.