Pacific Lutheran Loses to Another Nationally Ranked Opponent

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NEWBERG, Ore. - Pacific Lutheran shot just 26 percent for the game Saturday night as the nationally ranked George Fox Bruins cruised to a 59-34 Northwest Conference women's basketball win in Wheeler Sports Center.

George Fox, the 2012 Division III national runner-up, improved to 14-3 overall and 7-1 in the conference. It did so playing without 6-5 senior center Hannah Munger, but that didn't seem to matter to the team ranked No. 23 in this week's national poll.

Tonight's loss came on the heels of a Friday night defeat at No. 8-ranked Lewis & Clark.

Neither team shot the ball well in the opening part of the game, and in fact the hosts led just 11-5 at the midway point of the first half. Then while Bruins started getting many good looks while running an effective offense, the Lutes were unable to put the ball in the basket. That combination allowed George Fox to gradually pull away.

George Fox had a 29-12 lead with 2:14 left in the first period, and at that point it was shooting 45 percent from the field to just 20 percent (4-for-20) for PLU. The half ended with the Bruins holding a 32-16 lead, and they never led by less than that for the remainder of the contest. Their largest lead was 33 points when Megan Arnoldy hit a jumper to make it 56-23 with 6:53 to play.

Samantha Potter scored nine points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead Pacific Lutheran, which was 14-for-54 from the field and just 1-for-12 from three-point range. PLU also turned the ball over 17 times, though it enjoyed a 39-37 edge in rebounding.

A total of 10 George Fox players saw action and nine of them scored points, led by Hayley Cusick with 13. The team shot 43 percent (23-for-53) from the field.

Halfway through the conference season the Lutes find themselves tied for sixth place, though six of their final eight remaining regular season games come in Olson Auditorium. The first of those comes at 6 p.m. next Friday, Jan. 25, when third-place Whitman (6-2 NWC) comes to town.

- PLU -