WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Men's Basketball team saw their Senior Night spoiled by the Pomona-Pitzer Sagehens 93-85 inside of the Graham Athletic Center Tuesday night.
The Purple & Gold under first year Head Coach Mark Jensen finished 2017-18 with a 10-15, 8-8 SCIAC record and a 5th place mark within the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) standings.
They finish the season losing three of their last four but within that stretch upset Occidental College 74-73 on the road.
It was a strong crowd at Dave Jacobs Court as the Poet faithful came to send off the six seniors who were taking part in their final collegiate games. These seniors included Jake Moore (Dallas, TX), Jordan Lingard (Colac, Australia), Ryan Henry (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), Eric Davis (Ventura, Calif.), Louis Kurihara (Culver City, Calif.), and Victor Nwaba (Los Angeles, Calif.).
It was a slow start for the Poets as they fell behind early 11-2 and then 19-5 within the first five minutes of the game. The deficit increased to 17 with 12:38 to play but that didn't deter the Purple & Gold who surged back thanks to Kurihara who knocked down three of the Poets next four baskets, all coming from deep, which pulled WC within ten.
Pomona-Pitzer managed to gather themselves soon after to increase their lead back to 17 with under five minutes to play in the half but again Whittier didn't go away quietly as Reggie Dixon (Oxnard, Calif.) would spark the comeback with a three-pointer, a jumper, and a free throw, which came in front of a 10-1 run over the final 2:15 that moved the score to 46-40 at the break.
In the second half, it was back and forth. Henry was able to add 10 points with five boards and four assists within the frame and Moore lit it up with nine points, which included a three-pointer with 1:52 to play that cut the margin to eight. But that's as close as WC would get as four points by PP would seal the victory on the road.
Henry and Kurihara each finished with 15 points apiece. Henry also added four assists and five rebounds, while Kurihara was 5-9 from deep with three boards and four dimes. Dixon had a breakout game with 14 points in 13 minutes and Nwaba added 12 points with three assists and three rebounds.
Davis, despite only having five points finished with a team high six boards along with two assists, three steals and a block. Lingard was big inside posting eight points with four rebounds two assists, a steal and a block and Moore finished with nine points.
Whittier shot 40% from the field and 42% from behind the three-point line. They were outrebounded 36-34 and turned the ball over just nine times. They were outscored in the paint 32-12 but added 16 second chance points and 15 points off turnovers.