Jan. 2, 2014
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -
Guard Richard Woodworth (Sr., Bellevue/Newport) had 24 points, reaching the 1,000-point mark in career scoring and helping Western Washington University defeat University of Alaska Anchorage, 104-89, in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference men's basketball contest Thursday between two nationally ranked teams at the Wells Fargo Sports Complex.
Center Austin Bragg (Sr., Longview/Mark Morris) had game-highs of 25 points and 12 rebounds and forward Joey Schreiber (R-Fr., Renton/Eastside Catholic) added 22 points as the Vikings, ranked No.15 in the latest National Association of Basketball Coaches/NCAA Division II Top 25 Poll, improved to 9-2 overall and 3-0 in the GNAC.
No.23 UAA, which had a three-game winning streak snapped, fell to 8-5 overall and 1-1 in the GNAC. Forward Teancum Stafford led the Seawolves with 23 points. Guards Kyle Fossman and Brian McGill each had 22 points, with McGill adding a game-high nine assists.
The Vikings trailed only once, at 3-2, and used a 10-0 run midway through the period to open up a 27-12 lead with 11:10 left in the first half. Woodworth had four points and an assist in the burst. The margin remained in double digits the rest of the half and WWU held a 46-33 lead at halftime.
WWU went scoreless for a span of four minutes early in the second half, allowing UAA to pull within five, 61-56, on a Stafford 3-pointer with 12:42 remaining. Schreiber responded with back-to-back treys to push the margin back to 11, but the Seawolves were still within seven, 71-64, with under nine minutes remaining.
The Vikings then put the game away with another 10-0 run, capped by a Bragg tip-in that put WWU up, 81-64, with 4:55 to go. The Seawolves got to within nine in the final minute, but no closer.
Woodworth became the 24th player in WWU history to reach the 1000-point plateau on a basket with 9:31 remaining. He concluded the game with 1,011 career points.
The Vikings shot 57.1 percent (32-of-56) from the field, and had a 38-32 advantage in rebounds. WWU, which entered the contest leading NCAA II in blocked shots at 6.9 a game, had 10 blocks Thursday, with Anye Turner (Jr., Tumwater/Black Hills) getting four, and Bragg and Woodworth each notching two.
UAA hit just 38.0 percent (27-of-71) from the floor.
The triumph snapped a two-game losing streak for the Vikings, their longest skid in the last three seasons.
WWU travels to University of Alaska Fairbanks on Saturday, Jan. 4 (3 p.m., AT) for a GNAC counter.