DIII womens basketball — The Bruins beat Willamette and Puget Sound to remain in second place in the Northwest Conference behind Whitman

Bouncing back nicely from its first loss of the season, George Fox routed Willamette 71-42 Friday in Salem, then held off a game Puget Sound squad 70-58 Saturday night in Miller Gym.

“I definitely felt like (last) week overall was better,” head coach Michael Meek said. “We talked, addressed some things after (Friday’s) game because I thought Willamette did some good things, but I didn’t think we played at the highest level possible. I thought our effort was much better (Saturday).”by: SETH GORDON - Hemmed in - Megan Arnoldy attempts to split a pair of Puget Sound players during GFU's 70-58 win over Puget Sound Saturday at Miller Gym. The Bruins now sit in second place in the NWC, one game behind unbeaten Whitman.

The Bruins reached deep into their bench against Willamette and Meek said he was pleased with much of what he saw, especially junior Lauren Codling’s 17-rebound performance.

The result never seemed in doubt, as George Fox staked out an early 21-9 lead and pushed their advantage to 15 by halftime.

The Bearcats (3-14, 1-7 Northwest Conference) made a spirited start to the second half, but the Bruins pushed their lead to 21 in the first seven minutes and clamped down defensively for the final ten.

Senior Megan Arnoldy led George Fox in scoring with 12 points and Justine Brenner added 10. Already the team’s top rebounder at 6.5 boards per game, Codling’s 17 rebounds helped the Bruins dominate the glass 43-29

Puget Sound shot 48 percent from the floor in the first half Saturday, compared to just 36.8 percent for George Fox, but the Bruins attempted 13 more shots than their opponents and closed the half on a 12-5 run to go up 33-26 at halftime.

Meek’s squad scored the first six points of the second half to establish a comfortable cushion. The Loggers (11-6, 4-4) were unable to get closer than eight points the rest of the way, while the GFU lead reached as high as 17 points. A strong 12-for-15 performance at the free throw line in the second half helped secure the victory.

The Bruins (16-1, 7-1) had a strong inside-outside performance, as UPS had no answer for sophomore center Jordyn Peacock, who scored 14 points.

Jaimi Roos and Dacia Heckendorf added the outside punch, combining to go 7-for-9 on three-pointers for the game, with Roos also scoring 14.

“At the end of the day we’re 16-1 and our one loss came to a team that’s ranked third in the nation,” Meek said. “I’m really happy with the season as a whole, but we also have a really tough second half, some tough road games coming up. We’re going to have to keep improving and maturing.”

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