PARKLAND - Pacific Lutheran rallied from a nine-point halftime deficit only to eventually drop a 65-58 overtime decision Tuesday night in a Northwest Conference women's basketball game played at Olson Auditorium.
Puget Sound improved to 8-6 overall and 4-1 in the conference, while PLU suffered its sixth consecutive loss to fall to 4-10 overall and 1-4 in the NWC.
The Lutes put together a furious second half rally after a first-half stretch that saw them go without a point for 10 minutes and 15 seconds. PLU took a 10-7 lead on Samantha Potters fastbreak layin with 15:19 left in the opening period before a scoring drought that saw 10 misses shots and six turnovers.
In the meantime, Puget Sound scored 18 straight points to take a 25-10 lead. The Lutes finally broke the drought with a pair of free throws by Potter with 5:04 left in the half. Those charity tosses got the Lutes going, however, and they closed to within 28-19 at the break.
Puget Sound took a 16-point lead at 39-23 on a three-point bucket by Kelsey McKinnis with 14:33 remaining in the game, but the Lutes whittled away at their deficit, getting to within a point at 45-44 on Potter's three-point play with just under five minutes left.
The Loggers kept the lead until the closing minute when Katelyn Smith knocked down a free throw to tie it at 54-54 with 56 seconds on the clock. Neither team scored in the closing seconds with Puget Sound missing on one opportunity and the Lutes coming up empty on a pair of three-point attempts.
In the overtime, the visitors scored the first four points on free throws before Potter's layup pulled the Lutes to within two points. Puget Sound nailed five of its last six free throws, including three by McKinnis, to wrap up the victory, its sixth in a row against PLU.
Samantha Potter had a huge game for the Lutes with 29 points and 18 rebounds. She shot 12-for-19 from the floor and hit all five of her free throws. Smith added 14 points for the Lutes. PLU did a good job of sharing the ball, compiling 18 assists on their 21 field goals.
McKinnis led three Puget Sound players in double figures with 20 points, including 11-for-12 at the charity stripe, while Lindsay Layland and Taylor Jones both added 11 points. The Loggers made four less field goals than the Lutes (21-17), but were 29-for-36 from the free throw line.
Puget Sound won the rebound battle, 45-44, led by Layland with 10.
The Lutes are back on action at 6 p.m. Friday when they host the nationally ranked Lewis & Clark Pioneers.
- PLU -