PLU Never Trails in Beating Puget Sound, 80-62
PARKLAND - Cameron Schilling scored the first five points of the game and didn't let up for the rest of the 39 minutes that he was on the floor. As a result, Pacific Lutheran rolled past Puget Sound, 80-62, in a Northwest Conference men's basketball game played Tuesday night in Olson Auditorium.
With the win, the Lutes move into a tie with Puget Sound for second place in the conference standings, both with 3-2 records. PLU is now 6-8 overall, while the Loggers, who came into the game ranked No. 18 in this week's D3hoops.com national poll, are now 11-3 this season.
A junior post player who at 6-foot 5-inches gave up several inches to Puget Sound's big men, Schilling had an impressive game with 19 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists and three steals. Of his rebounding total, 14 came on the defensive end, which limited Puget Sound's second-chance opportunities.
Schilling hit a jumper and three-point basket within the first 90 seconds of the game to put the Lutes on top, 5-0, and they never trailed after that. In fact, the closest the Loggers came was two points, 7-5, when Anthony Gittens scored a pair of free throws about 4 1/2 minutes into the contest.
Leading 12-7, the Lutes used a 16-4 surge over a six-minute period to take a 28-11 lead with 7:56 left in the first half. Zachary Klein came off the bench to score seven of his 11 points during the run, and James Conti added five more points. Once PLU took a double-digit lead at 22-10 on Conti's three-point bucket, the Lutes never led by less than 10 points the rest of the way.
Pacific Lutheran took its largest lead at 51-30 when Drew Earnest fed Kai Hoyt for a layin with 15:43 remaining in the contest. That bucket came at the end of an 8-0 PLU run that wiped away Puget Sound's final hope of a second half rally. The Loggers had pulled to within 13 points, 43-30, on Nick Holden's layup just 90 seconds earlier.
Schilling was joined in double figure scoring by teammates Earnest with 16, Conti with 14, Hoyt with 12 and Klein with 11. Both Schilling and Conti had seven assists and Earnest added six to help the Lutes shoot 58 percent from the field (34-for-59).
For Puget Sound, the leading scorers were subs Ryan Rogers with 14 points and Rex Holmes with 11. Kaleb Shelton-Johnson had 10 points and Edric Egberuare had eight rebounds in a losing cause.
Pacific Lutheran returns to conference action at 8 p.m. Friday when it hosts Lewis & Clark College in Olson Auditorium.
- PLU -