Sutton Earns 12 Points, Eight Boards, as Bearcats Fall to Lewis-Clark in Exhibition

Ben Sutton (Jr., F, Seattle, WA/Ingraham HS)
Ben Sutton (Jr., F, Seattle, WA/Ingraham HS)

By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications

SALEM, Ore. -- Ben Sutton (Jr., F, Seattle, WA/Ingraham HS) led Willamette University with 12 points and eight rebounds, but Lewis-Clark State College (Idaho) achieved an 83-57 win in an exhibition game for the Bearcats on Saturday, Oct. 26 at Cone Field House. The game counted for Lewis-Clark State, which improved to 3-0 on the season.

LCSC competes in the NAIA and the Cascade Collegiate Conference. Willamette, a member of NCAA Division III and the Northwest Conference, will play another exhibition on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at the University of Portland, with tipoff set for 7 p.m. (PDT). The Bearcats will open the regular season by hosting Montclair State University (N.J.) on Friday, Nov. 9.

Jonathan Watts (So., G, San Diego, CA/Rancho Bernardo HS) and Kenny Wright Jr. (Fy., PG, Dallas, TX/R.L. Turner HS) each scored nine points for the Bearcats on Saturday. Daniel Plumer (Fy., PG, North Las Vegas, NV/Democracy Prep Acad.) chipped in seven points. Cade Whicker (Fy., F, Fruit Heights, UT/Davis HS) provided five rebounds.

Damek Mitchell paced the Warriors with 13 points. Travis Yenor supplied 12 points and Hodges Bailey added 11 points. Jake Albright led LCSC with nine rebounds, while Mitchell contributed seven boards and five assists.

The Warriors shot 42.4% for the game (28 of 66), including 41.4% from 3-point range (12 of 29). Lewis-Clark shot 51.7% from the field in the first half (15 of 29), while hitting 8 of 14 three-pointers (57.1%). LCSC held a 47-32 rebounding margin and committed only eight turnovers, while forcing WU into 14 turnovers.

Willamette connected on 35.2% of its field goals (19 of 54) and 28.6% of its 3-point attempts (4 of 14). At the free throw line, LCSC was 15 of 22 (68.2%) and Willamette was 15 of 20 (75.0%).

Lewis-Clark State surged out to a 10-4 lead. A 3-pointer by Alec Barba (Jr., W, Dallas, OR/Central HS) pulled the Bearcats within 10-7 at the 14:32 mark. WU trailed by just two points at 14-12 following a layup by Sutton with 11:53 on the clock. The Warriors scored the next five points. LCSC's advantage reached 28-16 when Mitchell put through a 3-pointer with 7:49 to go in the half. At halftime, the Warriors led 46-31.

The Bearcats reduced the margin to 48-37 on a fast-beak basket by Plumer with 17:52 remaining in the game. Lewis-Clark responded with a 9-3 run for a 57-40 advantage at the 14:22 mark. WU scored the next five points to pull within 57-45 with 12:09 left, but never got closer.