Thursday, November 29, 2012

Lutes struggling out of the gates

72-38 home loss to Northwest Tuesday highlights slow start

By Sam Horn, Sports Writer

  The Lutes men’s basketball team is off to a 1-5 start in the 2012-2013 season. 
    However, the Lutes don’t play conference games until Dec. 7, so they can still work out the kinks that have hindered them in the beginning of this season.

    The start to the season provided a tough test, to say the least.  The Lutes first played Seattle Pacific University, losing 72-48. 
    SPU is ranked seventh in the nation in NCAA Division II, and it limited the Lutes to shooting 33 percent from the field.  The game was an exhibition, so it didn’t affect either team’s record.
    After losing two close games in the Doug McArthur Basketball Classic, the Lutes faced Seattle University, a Division I school.  Seattle University beat the Lutes 58-49.  Andrew Earnest was lights out from the three point arc, as he drained six three-pointers to lead the Lutes in scoring with 22 points.  The Redhawks are 2-1.
    The Lutes fell to Texas-Dallas 66-58 and New Hope Christian, 80-72.    
    “Our team has done well and has lost some very close games,” sophomore Cole Parker said. “We have been in all the games and done some great things on the floor every game.”
    The Lutes picked up their first win of the season the day after Thanksgiving against Evergreen State in the PLU Thanksgiving Classic.  The Lutes dominated Evergreen State in nearly every facet of the game, resulting in a 76-45 win.
    PLU shot nearly 48 percent from the field, while Evergreen State shot a dismal 31 percent.
    Senior wing Cameron Schilling led the Lutes with 19 points and 10 rebounds, tallying his first double-double of the young season. 
    Schilling has scored double digits in four of the Lutes’ first five games this season.  Junior wing Kai Hoyt added 10 points and seven rebounds in the team’s win.  Every member of the Lutes basketball team played at least three minutes.
     The Lutes split the Thanksgiving Class tournament, losing to Eastern Oregon, 51-48, after shellacking Evergreen State.  Schilling led the Lutes once again in scoring with 13 points.  The Lutes missed a game-tying three in the waning seconds of the close affair. 
     “I think our team has what it takes to make the playoffs,” Parker said. “Even though the season has just started, we’re beginning to improve and play more together each and every day.”
    PLU fell at home, 38-72, Tuesday night to Northwest University. The Eagles improved to 8-2 with the win.
    The NAIA school held the Lutes to 29 percent from the floor while shooting 56 percent itself.
    The Lutes have one more non-conference game against St. Scholastica Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m. in Olson Auditorium before opening conference play next Friday at Whitworth.