Written by Student Assistant Christian Bond
SALEM, Ore. – The Pacific Lutheran University men's basketball team held a two-point lead into halftime, but couldn't hold on as the Northwest Conference rival Willamette University slashed past the Lutes 60-46 on Saturday night.
The Lutes (4-18, 1-13 NWC) worked their way into a 25-23 lead at halftime after Kelton Williams hit a layup with four seconds left before the intermission. Kyle James came off the bench and was a huge contributor in the first half of play. James scored seven points, converting on all three of his shot attempts. In the second half, Willamette (11-12, 5-9 NWC) tied the game at 32 with 16:47 left. That bucket would be the start of a run that gave the Bearcats a lead that they would not relinquish.
"We competed," said Head Coach Chad Murray. "It was an ugly half. Not well played by either team. Appreciated how our guys battled to give themselves a chance in the second half."
Leighton Kingma and Zac Webb led the Lutes with 12 points. Kingma did damage at the free-throw line, going five-for-six. Kingma gobbled six rebounds and dished out two assists. Webb got his points in efficient manner, going six-for-seven from the field. Webb pulled down five rebounds and had a steal. Dylan Foreman had a nice night for the Lutes. The Bellevue, Washington native scored nine points and hauled in five rebounds.
The Lutes host crosstown rivals University of Puget Sound on Tuesday. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m.