Contact: Mark Albanese, Director of Sports Communication
TACOMA, Wash. - The Pacific Lutheran University men's basketball team dived head first into Northwest Conference play on Friday night with the daunting task of facing the top ranked team in Division III in Whitman College. The inexperienced Lutes were unable to match the firepower of the high-octane Blues, falling 107-50 to the defending league champions inside Olson Gymnasium.
"There is really no way to truly prepare guys who haven't experienced anything like we saw tonight with film, practice, and a walkthrough. You need to physically and mentally go through it personally and as a team. So I knew going in that we would struggle in a lot of different areas strictly due to inexperience," said Head Coach Chad Murray.
"But now that we endured that, our guys will have a better idea of what to expect the next time and that will only help us."
Utilizing an aggressive full court press, the defending NWC Champion Blues (4-0, 1-0 NWC) tallied the opening eight points and never looked back, enjoying a comfortable lead at the halftime intermission en route to the win.
The Lutes (3-3, 0-1 NWC) had 13 players score baskets in the game while holding Whitman to its lowest offensive production of the season as the high-octane Blues entered the night averaging 117 points per game.
Dylan Foreman led the charge for the Lutes, scoring 10 points and securing five rebounds in 26 minutes of work. Markus Glenn added nine points while Sean McLaughlin and Luke Worley notched six points apiece. Leighton Kingma hauled in seven boards as the Lutes played fairly even with Whitman on the glass. The Blues owned a 43-41 rebounding edge but PLU enjoyed a 13-12 advantage in offensive boards.
"We are beginning a long-term process and need to put proper perspective on this. I thought we did a much better job of stepping up to the challenges Whitman presented in the second half."
The Lutes face another top 15 opponent tomorrow night, hosting 13th-ranked Whitworth University at 6 p.m. to close out the opening weekend of league play.