PORTLAND, Ore. – After a strong start, the Evergreen Geoducks couldn’t stop 14th-ranked Warner Pacific from going on a monster run, falling 78-59 in a Cascade Conference men’s basketball game on Friday night at C.C. Perry Gymnasium in Portland, Ore.
As the first half began, it looked like Evergreen was the nationally-ranked squad as the Geoducks built a 12-4 lead behind strong shooting from the free throw line and a hot Travis Wagner (Federal Way, Wash./Green River CC) from behind the arc. It wasn’t until the 10:28 mark that the Knights broke into double-digits as Warner Pacific found themselves in unfamiliar territory, trailing early.
Warner Pacific finally took their first lead of the game with 4:25 left to play as Stephen Harris made a pair of free throws but the Geoducks took the lead back with two free throws of their own from freshman Frankie Johnson (Renton, Wash./Hazen HS) just four second later. Unfortunately for Evergreen, the Knights responded with 17-0 run to finish up the first half up, 40-24.
The Knights continued to pull away as the second half began, scoring six straight to push the lead past 20. Senior Elzie Dickens (Seattle, Wash./Highline CC) finally ended the Evergreen scoring draught with a made jumper at the 17:54 mark but the differential would prove too much for the Geoducks to overcome as WPC cruised to the 78-59 win.
Evergreen was led by 19 points from Johnson, who finished just one point short of a fourth-straight 20—point game. Junior Cody Peters (Coupeville, Wash./Western Oregon Univ.) finished with 12 points. The Geoducks shot 35.8% on the night, making 19-of-53 attempts from the field.
Warner Pacific was led by 17 points from Harris, including a perfect seven-for-seven on free throws. Marcus Moore and Ryan Parks each added 15 points in the win. The Knights controlled the glass, bringing down 41 rebounds compared with just 26 for the Geoducks.
The Geoducks will stay in Portland tonight, traveling to Concordia on Saturday. Tip with the Cavs is set for 7:30 p.m.