EUGENE, Ore. – The front-line trio of Andrew Batiuk, Zach Anderson and David Lee combined for 58 points but the Linfield Wildcats got little support from their role players during a 83-78 loss in overtime to Northwest Christian Wednesday night at Morse Event Center.
Playing their last nonconference tilt of the season, the Wildcats slipped to 2-9 with the resumption of Northwest Conference play looming next week. Northwest Christian evened its record at 8-8.
Batiuk, a freshman center from Lake Oswego’s Westside Christian, sank 11-of-21 shots on his way to a game-high 28 points. Zach Anderson, battled his way through a 4-for-18 shooting night to record a coveted a double-double. The lanky forward netted 20 points and 10 rebounds, due in large part to his 10-for-11 efficiency at the free throw line. Lee, playing only his second game of the season due to a lingering injury, bagged 10 points to go with six rebounds.
Linfield, which built its largest lead of seven points with 1:20 left in the opening half, led 40-37 at the break.
The Wildcats led for the entire second half before the host Beacons battled back to tie the game when it counted, forcing overtime with Jordan Buhler’s layup with 11 seconds left in regulation.
In the extra session, NCU seized control, leading from start to finish and outscoring the ‘Cats 15-10, thanks to a 12-6 disparity it free throw opportunities.
For the game, NCU owned a slight edge in shooting percentage, .418 to Linfield’s .368, but the Beacons forced 21 turnovers while surrendering the ball just nine times across the game’s 40 minutes.
Matt Kalbfleisch earned his first start at point guard for the ‘Cats, notching seven points, six rebounds, two assists and a pair of steals. Dakotah Pine came off the bench to added five assists and three rebounds in 13 minutes of action.
Four players reached double figures in scoring for the Beacons, led by Brian Hampton’s 19 points. Greg Shepard had 15, Buhler scored 14 and Travis Pacos added 13 for NCU.
The Wildcat reserves, led by the seven points of Michael Moreland, were outscored 35-11 by the Beacon bench.
NEXT: Linfield is on the road as NWC action reboots in the first week of the new year. The ‘Cats travel to Portland’s Pamplin Sports Complex to battle the rival Lewis & Clark Pioneers on Friday, Jan. 6. The following night, Linfield hosts Willamette at Ted Wilson Gym. Both games start at 8 p.m. with live internet play-by-play coverage starting at approximately 7:50.
28 points, 8 rebounds
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128