LADY LUTES TOP NORTHWEST TO MAKE IT THREE IN A ROW
Madison Salisbury provided eight of the game’s opening 11 points as the Lutes (4-2) jumped out to an early 10-1 lead just over four minutes into the game against Northwest. PLU’s advantage would swell to as many as 10 points in the opening stanza, enjoying a 20-11 advantage after the first 10 minutes of play. The Lutes extended their advantage to 34-22 at the halftime intermission.
The Lute lead ballooned to 17 early in the fourth quarter before the Eagles (3-9) fought back, pulling within five with 1:24 remaining in the game. PLU remained cool down the stretch, holding Northwest scoreless the rest of the way while hitting four free throws to escape with the win.
“We focused on playing a fast-paced game and it paid off,” said PLU head coach Jennifer Childress. “It was fun basketball tonight. The defense did a great job pressuring and forcing turnovers, which fueled our transition game.”
Salisbury and Emma Janousek provided a one-two punch for the Lutes, combining for 36 points. Kristin Sturdivan had a double-double with 20 points and six rebounds while Janousek added 16 points, six boards, six assists, and four steals. Katie Taylor added eight points off the bench while Anna Hurd had six points and six boards.
“Emma was a true court general tonight and made some incredible passes up the court,” said Childress.
The Lutes dominated inside, owning a 40-24 advantage in points in the paint in addition to outrunning the Eagles with an 18-4 edge in fast break buckets. The turnover battle ended heavily in PLU’s favor with the Lutes committing 14 to Northwest’s 25.
The Lutes return to the hardwood on Saturday, Dec. 15, as they host the California Institute of Technology at 4 p.m. in the opening day of the annual Pacific Northwest Tournament.
NORTHWEST BARRAGE OF THREES TOO MUCH FOR LUTES
Leighton Kingma scored a season-high 28 points but it wasn’t enough as Northwest Christian University canned 17 three-pointers to sprint past the Pacific Lutheran University mens basketball team 107-87 on Saturday in a non-conference tilt inside Olson Gymnasium.
The first five minutes of the second half proved decisive in a game that featured eight lead changes and five ties. The game was deadlocked at 45 coming out of the half before the Beacons (9-2) notched the opening eight points of the second half. The surge was part of a 26-6 scoring binge for Northwest Christian in the opening five minutes while the Beacons drained eight of their 11 attempts from three-point land in the first 10 minutes of the second stanza. The Lutes (3-3) whittled the deficit to 13 on a Conor Geiger layup with three minutes left but homestanding PLU was unable to come any closer.
It was the Kingma show early in the first half with the junior scoring 11 of the Lutes opening 13 points. The first seven minutes was a back and forth affair with eight lead changes and five ties. The Beacons Tyrus Williams hit a three with 12:50 left in the half that tilted the scales 13-10 in the visitors favor. Northwest Christian would grow the lead to six but the Lutes battled back, scoring six of the final eight points to tie the game 45-45 at the halftime intermission.
Kingma finished the night with 28 points, hitting seven of his 10 shots from distance while also collecting three blocks. Kelton Williams added 14 points and nine assists while Jordan Thomas netted 12 points and seven rebounds. Geiger and Zac Webb each finished with 10 points with Webb coming off the bench and also grabbing five rebounds.
“It starts and finishes with how you guard the ball and your ability to keep it in front of you without too much help,” said PLU head coach Chad Murray. “They overwhelmed us in that early stage of the second half with head down straight line drives that led to kick out threes that they made at an amazing rate.
“Before we knew what hit us we were down double digits and just fighting to keep pace. It’s a great lesson for a young team about how important it is to be able to play 40 minutes. We’re going to be involved in several close games and if we can stay together and resist the temptation to want to do things ourselves we will have more positive results. Give Northwest Christian credit, they stuck with it and kept attacking and really played great basketball the entire second half.”
PLU finished the day shooting 47.9 percent (34-for-71) from the floor, including a 50 percent clip (17-for-34) in the second half but it was no match for the Beacons, who hit 68.6 percent of shots (24-for-35) in the second half and 56.3 percent (40-for-71) overall. The Lutes owned a 25-23 edge in points off turnovers and a 40-38 edge in points in the paint but was out-dueled 14-4 in fast break scoring.
The Lutes take the next week off as they focus on final exams before hosting Benedictine University on Friday, Dec. 21. Tipoff inside Olson Gymnasium is slated for 7 p.m.
MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL AND LUPUS FOUNDATION TEAM UP
Minor League Baseball (MiLB) has announced a partnership with the Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) to become an official partner of MiLB Copa de la Diversión (“Copa”). The LFA will be the first-ever philanthropic partner tied specifically to MiLB’s Hispanic/Latinx fan engagement initiative.
The new partnership will expand the LFA’s reach, and help raise awareness of lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease that can cause inflammation, pain and damage to any part of the body. Hispanics are two-to-three times more likely to develop lupus, making this outreach even more crucial. The LFA and its national network of advocates will work closely with MiLB teams to help promote increased lupus awareness and advance the fight to find a cure.
Participating Copa teams will support the partnership through public address announcements, in-game promotions and distribution of LFA resources during select Copa games. Advocates from the Foundation will make an appearance at various Copa games to distribute lupus resources and educate people about clinical trial participation. The Lupus Foundation of America will also be featured on MiLB’s digital network through the new Copa-specific site, as well as on each participating team’s Copa-focused site.
Lupus is difficult to diagnose, hard to live with, a challenge to treat and is potentially fatal. Hispanics tend to develop the disease at a younger age, have more symptoms at diagnosis and experience more problems with lupus than others. Through their comprehensive programs, the LFA is focused on reducing the time to
diagnosis, expanding direct services, and ensuring people with lupus have access to safe and effective treatments.
“The goal of Copa is and always has been to engage authentically with our Hispanic/Latinx fans in MiLB communities across the country,” said Kurt Hunzeker, vice president of marketing strategy and research for Minor League Baseball. “Our new partnership with the Lupus Foundation of America will aid in those efforts by
providing new, life-improving educational tools to our ballparks and bringing a better understanding of lupus to our fans.”
“We are excited and grateful to have Minor League Baseball joining us in the fight against lupus,” said Stevan W. Gibson, president and CEO of the Lupus Foundation of America. “This partnership will provide us with an opportunity to engage with a population that is disproportionately impacted by lupus, and expands our ability to deliver needed information and resources to all people with lupus in order to help them navigate the challenges of this complex and devastating disease.”
The Lupus Foundation of America begins its outreach in MiLB this week as an exhibitor at the Baseball Trade Show, a feature of the annual Baseball Winter Meetings, in Las Vegas.
About Minor League Baseball:
Minor League Baseball, headquartered in St. Petersburg, Florida, is the governing body for all professional baseball teams in the United States, Canada, and the Dominican Republic that are affiliated with Major League Baseball clubs through their farm systems. Fans are coming out in unprecedented numbers to this one-of-a-kind experience that can only be found at Minor League Baseball ballparks. In 2018, Minor League Baseball attracted nearly 40.5 million fans to its ballparks to see the future stars of the sport hone their skills. From the electricity in the stands to the excitement on the field, Minor League Baseball has provided affordable family-friendly entertainment to people of all ages since its founding in 1901. For more information, visit www.MiLB.com.
About the Lupus Foundation of America:
The Lupus Foundation of America is the national force devoted to solving the mystery of lupus, one of the world’s cruelest, most unpredictable and devastating diseases, while giving caring support to those who suffer from its brutal impact. Through a comprehensive program of research, education, and advocacy, we lead the fight to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus. Learn more about the Lupus Foundation of America at lupus.org.