Geoduck slip by Wildcats 67-65
McMINNVILLE, Ore. - Brittany Weaver dropped in 18 points, Evergreen State survived a last-second shot and the Geoducks made just enough plays down the stretch to knock off Linfield 67-65 Friday night at Ted Wilson Gymnasium.
The win moves the Geoducks to 4-7 on the season while the Wildcats dip to 2-5.
After battling back from a nine-point second-half deficit, Evergreen State seemed to put the game away after a Weaver free throw put the Geoducks up 67-63 with 32 seconds left in the game.
Linfield got new life when Gretchen Owens was fouled on a loose ball with 16 seconds left. Owens was calm under pressure, sinking both shots to trim the deficit to two. Forced to foul, the Wildcats put Alex Saab on the free throw line for a one-and-one.
The Cats got a break as Saab missed the front end of the one-and-one, giving the Linfield the ball back with 12.7 ticks remaining.
Nadra Evans brought the ball up court but on her way to the basket an Evergreen State defender reached in and forced a jump ball. Retaining possession with just 1.7 seconds on the clock, the Wildcats inbounded the ball to Owens but her contested shot fell short at the buzzer.
Linfield was nearly able to overcome a night when it turned the ball over 23 times and shot just 4-for-17 from outside the arc.
Trailing 34-30 in the opening minutes of the second half, Linfield got going offensively, rolling off 10-straight points to grab a 40-34 edge. Owens capped off the spurt with a steal and a layup at the 13:33 mark.
The Wildcats extended their lead to as many as nine on two occasions, but the Geoducks proved relentless down the stretch.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from Weaver cut Linfield's lead to 55-51 and Evergreen State took the lead minutes later on a bucket from Latrina Woods that put the visitors up 57-56.
With 1:22 on the clock, the Geoducks caught a break when LeAsia Jones' rebound and score as the shot clock ran out put Evergreen State up 66-63.
The first half came down to Linfield's ability to control the tempo of the game. After falling behind 9-2, the Wildcats sunk back into a 2-3 zone and limited the Geoducks to just 34.6 percent shooting.
Neither team was able to generate much offense, as an Owens layup was the only points scored between the 8:25 and 3:21 marks of the first half.
Evergreen State converted 13 of its points off Linfield turnovers. The Wildcats outscored the smaller Geoducks 12-4 in the paint over the first 20 minutes.
To go along with Weaver's 18 points, Katie Garcin chipped in with 14 points and Ali Matisons added 10 off the bench.
Owens paced Linfield with 19 points and nine rebounds. Lindsey Gummersall played 36 huge minutes for the ‘Cats, scoring 17 points on 6-of-11 shooting.
Linfield shot 45 percent for the game and outrebounded Evergreen State 41-26.
The Geoducks face Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore. tomorrow night at 6pm.