Willamette Holds Off Clackamas CC 70-69 in Exhibition Game

Kalugin Clinches Win by Hitting Two Free Throws with 13 Seconds Left

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University built a 16-point halftime lead and owned a 65-53 advantage with 4:05 left in the game, before holding off Clackamas Community College for a 70-69 win in an exhibition women's basketball game at Cone Field House on Wednesday, Oct. 30.

Katie Kalugin (Jr., G, Woodburn, OR/Woodburn HS) hit two free throws for WU with 13 seconds left to give the Bearcats a 70-67 lead. Tori Wilkinson scored on a short jump shot with about two seconds left, but Willamette was able to bring the ball in-bounds and run out the clock.

Freshman guard Kylie Towry (Medford, OR/South Medford HS) was the game's high scorer, as she led Willamette with 18 points on 5 of 9 shooting, including 4 of 8 three-pointers. Kalugin added a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Overall, five Willamette players reached double figures in scoring. The others were Alex Wert (Fr., F, Spokane, WA/St. George's HS) with 12 points, Rebecca Josephson (Sr., G, Fair Oaks, CA/Del Campo HS) with 11 points and Alexa Beeson (Sr., G, Portland, OR/Lincoln HS), also with 11 points.

Laci Effenburger topped Clackamas with 17 points and hit 9 of 12 free throws. Wilkinson tacked on 15 points, while Jasmine Gibbs-Brown provided the Cougars with 13 points.

The Bearcats connected on 10 of 24 three-pointers (41.7%) during the game, including 7 of 15 (46.7%) in the first half.

Two three-pointers in the first five minutes helped Willamette built a 10-3 lead. The advantage increased to 15-3 on two free throws by Jojo DeLong (Jr., G, Santa Clarita, CA/Canyon HS) at the 14:09 mark and a three-point basket by Beeson with 13:26 on the clock.

Willamette held its largest lead at 19 points after a 3-pointer by Kalugin created a 28-9 margin with 8:37 left in the half. The Cougars scored the next five points and eventually cut the lead to 31-20 with 4:11 to go. Willamette recovered with a 7-2 run. Kalugin and Towry each had 11 points at the break.

Willamette led 46-28 with 14:13 left in the game after Wert sank two free throws. An 8-0 run by Clackamas -- ending with a 3-pointer by Wilkinson, reduced the lead to 10 points.

The Bearcats answered with a 3-pointer by Beeson. A bit later, Beeson put through two charity shots to give WU a 51-37 edge.

CCC used a 14-7 run to pull within 58-51 with 5:45 to go. The Cougars were 9 for 12 on free throws during the run, which also included a trifecta by Lorissa Martine and a jumper by Rebekah Jamerson.

Seven of the next nine points went to the Bearcats, as WU extended its margin to 65-53. Beeson opened the run with a 3-pointer with 5:14 left, while the remaining points were earned at the line by Josephson and Towry.

Clackamas tallied the next 11 points. Effenburger started the comeback with a layup at the 3:45 mark. After the Cougars added a layup by Gibbs-Brown, neither team scored for over a minute. With 1:42 left, Effenburger hit two free throws when Josephson fouled out, moving CCC within 65-69.

A 3-pointer launched by Wilkinson at the 1:32 mark and two free throws by Gibbs-Brown with 0:46 left completed the run. Even so, WU held a 65-64 lead.

Towry swished a 3-point shot for Willamette with 26 seconds to go, but the 68-64 advantage was short-lived, as Wilkinson answered with a 3-pointer just four seconds later.

On the next possession, the Bearcats ran the clock down to 13 seconds before Kalugin was fouled. After she hit both free throws, the Bearcats kept CCC from scoring over the next 11 seconds. By the time Wilkinson hit her inside shot, the Cougars were unable to foul on the in-bounds pass.

The Bearcats shot 36.5% (19 of 52) and limited Clackamas to 32.2% shooting (19 of 59). CCC shot just 20.7% in the first half (6 of 29). The Cougars were 4 of 21 on three-pointers, including 0 for 10 in the first half. Willamette earned a 45-38 rebounding margin, but had 27 turnovers, compared to 20 by CCC.

Both teams made plenty of free throws. The Cougars were 27 of 39 at the line (69.2%), while the Bearcats finished 22 of 28 (78.6%).

Willamette will host the WU Alumni on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 5:30 p.m. (PDT) in Cone Field House. The Bearcats will open the regular season against the University of La Verne during the Bon Appetit Tournament at Lewis & Clark College on Friday, Nov. 15. Tipoff in Portland, Ore., is set for 5 p.m. (PST).

BOX SCORE

Willamette University 70
Clackamas CC 69 (Exhib.)

Katie Kalugin scored 13 points for the Bearcats, including two free throws with 13 seconds left to give Willamette a 70-67 lead.

Katie Kalugin scored 13 points for the Bearcats, including two free throws with 13 seconds left to give Willamette a 70-67 lead.