PORTLAND, Ore. – Freshman Jackson Gion (Fr., Morgan Hill, Calif.) paced four players in double figures and the Linfield Wildcats scored the first victory of the Shanan Rosenberg era with an 82-63 win over Portland Bible College on Sunday at the Bon Appetit Classic at Lewis & Clark's Pamplin Sports Center.
The victory gave Rosenberg his first triumph since taking over as coach of the Wildcats. Linfield evened its season record at 1-1.
Portland Bible's Jordan Shaddy scored a game-high 19 points, Raymon Taylor added a dozen points and five rebounds, and Affice Johnson chipped in with 10 points.
Linfield's first-year sharpshooter Ryan Potter (Fr., Molalla, Ore.) netted 15 points, all from beyond the 3-point arc. Ryan Cali (Jr., San Jose, Calif.) contributed to a late second-half surge, while pulling down a game-high seven rebounds and also shooting a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line. Chris Dirks (Jr., Hood River, Ore.) and Nick Cantonwine (Jr., Salem, Ore.) each scored 10 points in starting roles.
Portland Bible took an early seven-point lead when Jeremiah Ridgeway drained a 3-pointer at the 15:17 mark in the first half. The game remained tight during the opening 20 minutes, with Portland Bible building the largest lead of the period of seven points.
Momentum begn to shift back in Linfield's favor when Nick Cantonwine (Jr., Salem, Ore.) sank a 3-pointer to tie the game at 16 with 8:40 remaining.
The two teams traded baskets after that and Linfield walked into the locker room owning a two-point advantage. Shaddy converted two free throws to cut the lead to 41-39 just four seconds before the half's conclusion.
Linfield jumped out to a six-point lead a minute into the second half. However, Portland Bible eventually squared the game at 45 when Shaddy knocked down a mid-range jumper. After that, it was all Linfield.
During the next five-minute span, Linfield went on a 13-3 run, putting the purple-clad Wildcats in control at 58-48. During the run, Adam Myren (Jr., Carmichael, Calif.) scored five points, three of those coming off a deep 3-pointer.
Linfield kept the game under control after that run, leading by as many as 17 with 2:41 remaining when Ryan Cali (Jr., San Jose, Calif.) potted two free throws.
The closing six minutes of action were confidence-building for Linfield, which launched a 17-3 scoring spurt to end the game. Through rock-solid defense and six points from Cali down the stretch, the Wildcats won by a comfortable 19-point margin.
Linfield made the most of its free throw opportunities, hitting 88 percent (22 for 25) from the line compared with Portland Bible's 57 percent (17 of 30).
AHEAD: Linfield heads to California's Central Coast to face the University of California at Santa Cruz Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. in the UC-Santa Cruz Classic. The four-team tournament, which also includes St. Vincent (Pa.) and Cal Tech, will be staged at the new Kaiser Permanente Arena, home of the Golden State Warriors' developmental team.
Coach Shanan Rosenberg
Emphasizes efficent play at both ends of floor
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128