PORTLAND, Ore. - Lewis & Clark nearly doubled up Pacific Lutheran in rebounds and used that dominance in dumping the Lutes, 81-55, in a Northwest Conference women's basketball game played Saturday night at Pamplin Sports Complex.
The host Pioneers grabbed 63 total rebounds, and their 35 boards on the offensive end were three more than Pacific Lutheran's total for the game. That led to plenty of second- and third-chance opportunities for the Pioneers (18-5 overall), who remain atop the Northwest Conference standings with a 12-2 record.
The Lutes, meanwhile, were unable to rebound from a mid-week loss to Puget Sound, falling for the 10th time in the last 11 games. They are now 5-17 overall and 3-11 in the conference.
With Jordan Westering scoring five points, the Lutes took an early 6-4 lead. The Pioneers responded with 10 unanswered points and did not trail again. PLU closed its deficit to 25-22 on Shelly Kilcup's basket with 3:16 left in the first half, but the Pioneers pulled away in the closing minutes to take a 33-24 halftime edge.
Once Lewis & Clark took an 11-point lead with about 17 minutes left in the game, it never led by less than 10 points the rest of the way. The largest leads came at 79-49 on Tayler Wang's three-point shot with 3:12 remaining. That three-pointer was one of only two that the Pioneers made during the game, compared to eight for the Lutes, but that mattered little in the end.
Sara Backstrom scored 16 points to lead the Lutes, followed by Kilcup with 12 and Westering with 10. Kilcup led the team with six assists, while Samantha Potter and Mandy Wall shared team-high rebounding honors with five apiece. The Lutes shot 41 percent (22-for-54) from the field, but settled for jump shots and as a result were only 3-for-9 from the foul line.
Kristina Williams scored 20 points and Megan Spence added 15 and a game-high nine rebounds for the Pioneers, who had four players with at least seven rebounds. Lewis & Clark shot 39 percent (26-for-67) from the field and enjoyed a huge free throw advantage, making 27 of its 43 attempts, good for 63 percent.
PLU closes out its season next Friday and Saturday when it hosts Willamette and Linfield at Olson Auditorium. Both games tip off at 6 p.m.
- PLU -