Finishing the season victorious

Tatum Odegard

The Falcons won their 20th and 21st games of the season this weekend against Western Oregon (11-14, 7-12 GNAC) and Concordia Portland (14-13, 8-11 GNAC).
On Thursday, the Falcons beat Western Oregon 73-68, at Royal Brougham Pavilion.
This marked the eighth time that the Falcons have won 20 games or more in a single season under head coach Julie Heisey.
“It was awesome to finish with a 20th win,” Heisey said. “I think we played well as a whole considering the last time we played Western Oregon was in early December.”
Western Oregon fought hard against the Falcons the whole game, and ended the second quarter leading 31-30.
“We unfortunately didn’t put in the pedal to the medal during the last moments of the game, and we ended up giving up some turnovers,” explained Heisey.
The last time the two teams played, the Falcons won 87-52.
“I was disappointed that we didn’t win by more points,” junior Riley Evans said. Despite some offensive difficulties, senior Courtney Hollander was able to rack up a “double-double,” scoring 21 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
The Falcons were also able to score a season high of 85 percent at the free throw line, and shot their game high shooting percentage of 54 percent.
Seniors Julia Haining and Jordan McPhee each scored 11 points.
Rachel Shim, who had been out the last four games with a knee injury, was able to play for 20 minutes, earning six points.
On Saturday night, the Falcons battled it out against Concordia-Portland and won 72-65.
Coming into the game, the Falcons had already locked down the No. 3 spot in the conference.
In the first quarter, SPU scored 19 points, earning them an early 16-point lead.
The momentum of the game shifted during the third quarter, and Concordia began to dominate.
With around nine minutes left in the game, Concordia scored 12 points back to back.
“We played a great game, but near the end we opened the door for them to come back,” said Heisey.
McPhee was the lead scorer with 19 points, followed by Haining with 14 points.
McPhee almost racked up a “double-double,” snagging nine rebounds. Shim was back in the game, scoring 12 points, eight of which were the first of the game.
Senior Lindsey Lee scored four points, had four rebounds, and four assists.
Erica Pagano scored six points. During the last seconds of the game, Heisey subbed out all of her seniors.
At the end of the game, the team celebrated the six seniors on the team: McPhee, Hollander, Shim, Lee, Haining and Pagano.
Shim and Haining are fifth year seniors; the rest of the girls have played on the team for four years.
“Senior night is always special,” Heisey said. “It’s a time to celebrate the girls for giving four years to the program.
“They have worked so hard through the years, and all of them have battled injuries and came back from them.”
All the girls have worked hard to balance school and their sport.
According to Heisey, Lee has never missed a practice in her entire four-year career at SPU.
“I truly believe that this group of seniors has made this program better,” Heisey concluded.
This week, the Falcons head back up to Alaska to play their first GNAC tournament game against Simon Fraser.