By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
TACOMA, Wash. -- Carolyn Ho (So., G, Parker, CO/Ponderosa HS) of Willamette University scored 13 points to go along with four rebounds, three assists, and three steals against the University of Puget Sound on Friday, Jan. 7, but the Loggers took a 26-13 lead in the first quarter on their way to a 69-51 victory over the Bearcats. Puget Sound improved to 10-1 on the season, including 3-0 in the Northwest Conference. The Bearcats moved to 6-6 overall, 1-2 in the NWC.
Ho leads the Bearcats this season with 9.7 points per game and 50.6% accuracy on field goals. Against the Loggers on Friday, she was 5 for 10 from the field. Claire Bonnet (Jr., G, Boise, ID/Boise HS) added eight points and four rebounds for Willamette, while Sami Riggs (Jr., G, La Verne, CA/Bonita HS) tallied seven points and three assists. Amanda Carpenter (Grad., G, Beaverton, OR/Sunset HS) finished with six points and led the Bearcats with two 3-point baskets.
The Loggers were led by Sophie Nilsson, who scored 23 points and hit 10 of 16 field goals. Nilsson grabbed six rebounds, provided four assists, and had three steals. Addison Reardon tacked on 15 points, with Rhae Schulz-O'Neil providing eight points and a game-high nine rebounds. Paige Gerhart was credited with eight boards and six assists.
Puget Sound surged out to a 14-4 lead with 4:25 left in the first quarter. The early run by the Loggers featured eight points by Nilsson, including a 3-point basket for the first points of the game. Reardon scored the other six points. Willamette pulled within 14-9 on a pair of free throws by Ashley Collins (So., P, Chino Hills, CA/Chino Hills HS) and a 3-pointer by Carpenter at the 3:41 mark. The Loggers ended the quarter with a 12-4 run.
The Bearcats trailed 31-15 less than three minutes into the second quarter, but layups by Ho and CarolAnn Edwards (So., F, Spokane, WA/University HS) cut the lead to 31-19 with 5:58 left in the half. The Loggers countered with a layup from Nilsson and a 3-pointer by Reardon to grab a 17-point lead. The Loggers owned a 46-23 advantage at the break, led by Nillson's 17 points. She scored 13 points in the first quarter.
A 15-13 scoring edge for Puget Sound in the third quarter left Willamette with a 61-36 deficit entering the fourth quarter. The Bearcats outscored the Loggers 15-8 in the final period, led by four points from Bonnet and three points each by Riggs, Ho, and Jasmine Shigeno (So., G, Hockinson, WA/Hockinson HS).
Puget Sound shot 45.8% from the field (27 of 59) and made 8 of 26 three-point attempts (30.8%). The Loggers hit 7 of 12 free throws (58.3%) and earned a 45-28 rebounding margin. Willamette was held to 33.9% on field goals (19 of 56), including 27.8% from 3-point range (5 of 18). WU connected on 8 of 11 free throws (72.7%).
Willamette will play at Pacific Lutheran University on Saturday, Jan. 8. Game time in Tacoma, Washington, is set for 4 p.m. (PST).