Feb. 28, 2008
FAIRBANKS, Alaska -
Guard Amanda Dunbar (R-Fr., Marysville/Marysville-Pilchuck) scored a game-high 23 points, but Western Washington University fell 78-72 to University of Alaska Fairbanks in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference women's basketball game Thursday at Patty Center.
The Vikings dropped to 8-20 overall and 5-11 in GNAC action. Forward Claire Pallansch (Jr., Redmond) had 16 points, hitting 8-of-10 free throws, and guard Marelle Moehrle (Fr., Lynnwood/Meadowdale) contributed 14 points off the bench.
Alaska Fairbanks, which snapped a six-game losing streak, improved to 10-13 overall and 3-12 in league play. Sheena Brown had 22 points, eight assists, five rebounds and three steals to lead the Nanooks, and Kari Reabold added 19 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals.
Trailing by one point, 29-28, at halftime, Western opened the second half with a 17-5 run to take a 45-34 lead as Moehrle hit a 3-pointer with 14:30 remaining.
Alaska Fairbanks responded with a 20-5 burst for a 54-50 advantage with nine minutes left. The Vikings came back to go ahead by two, 56-54, with 7:39 to go on another 3-pointer by Moehrle before a 20-7 run by the Nanooks put them ahead by 11, 74-63, with 3:50 to play. The closest Western got after that was six, 78-72, on a 3-pointer by Dunbar with nine seconds left.
The Vikings shot 44.0 percent (22-of-50) from the field, while holding Alaska Fairbanks to 38.9 percent (28-of-72). But Western had 22 turnovers to 10 for the Nanooks.
Alaska Fairbanks had a 43-38 edge in rebounds, grabbing 21 offensive boards.
Dunbar, who connected on 4-of-6 3-pointers, has averaged 18.7 points over the last four games for Western. Moehrle also hit four 3-pointers and had six rebounds.
The loss snapped a seven-game series winning streak for the Vikings over Alaska Fairbanks.
Western, which has lost 102 player-games because of injuries, used its 17th different starting lineup.
The Vikings next are at nationally No.9-ranked University of Alaska Anchorage on Saturday (7 p.m.) for a GNAC counter.