McMINNVILLE, Ore. - P.J. Taylor scored a team-high 24 points and Lewis & Clark buried 15 3-pointers on its way to an 86-71 win over Linfield Tuesday evening at Ted Wilson Gymnasium.
After playing an even first half, Lewis & Clark (15-5, 8-3 NWC) took control early in the second half and never looked back. The Pioneers held the Wildcats to 37.1 percent shooting during the final period, while giving Linfield (8-12, 4-7 NWC) only two free throw attempts over the final 20 minutes.
K.C. Wiser and his game-high 33 points on 12-of-17 shooting kept the ‘Cats competitive before the Pioneers iced the game away at the free throw line. Lewis & Clark made 13-of-14 attempts from the charity stripe, including an 11-of-11 output during the second half.
With the scored tied at 41, Lewis & Clark opened the second half with eight-straight points. Quentin Sims and Donato Perconti knocked down consecutive 3-pointers to push the Lewis & Clark lead to 49-41 with 18:15 remaining.
After a Sergio Rosario layup at the 10:34 mark cut the Lewis & Clark lead to 59-51, Kyle Meeuwsen answered with four-straight points.
The lead would swell to 69-55 on a Marcus Wells 3-pointer at the 6:46 mark. Wells proved to be a difficult matchup for the Wildcats in the second half, as the point guard used his quickness to penetrate the Linfield defense.
Linfield saw the deficit dip below double digits on two separate occasions over the final four minutes, but were unable to seriously challenge Lewis & Clark.
Wells knocked down all six of his free throw opportunities over the final 1:33 to seal the game.
Not including Wiser’s 33 points, Taylor and Wells managed to outscore the rest of the Linfield team. Perconti added 16 points while Meeuwsen chipped in with 15.
The Pioneers committed just seven turnovers, while forcing the Wildcats into 14 miscues.
The two teams played an even first half, with the score tied at 41 heading into intermission. The Wildcats controlled the glass during the first half, outrebounding the Pioneers 22-7.
Linfield raced out to an early 21-11 lead on a Zach Meikle 3-pointer at the 11:42 mark of the first half. The lead would be short-lived, as a 17-5 Lewis & Clark run staked the Pioneers a 28-26 advantage with 6:27 remaining.
Lewis & Clark stayed in the game with hot shooting from the perimeter. The Pioneers knocked down 9-of-16 attempts from beyond the arc during the period, including three triples over the final 3:06 of the half. Taylor was at the center of the attack with four 3-pointers.
NEXT: Linfield returns to action Friday when the ‘Cats play host to visiting Willamette at 8 p.m.
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