PORTLAND, Ore. - Pacific Lutheran held a lead through the opening seven minutes of the game on Saturday night, but No. 9-ranked Lewis & Clark College proved to be too much for the Lutes, taking a 76-65 Northwest Conference women's basketball win at Pamplin Sports Center.
The host Pioneers are now 21-2 overall and 12-2 in the conference, their only two losses to unbeaten NWC foe George Fox, which is ranked No. 3 in Division III women's basketball. Pacific Lutheran falls to 7-16 overall and 4-10 in the conference with the defeat.
Samantha Potter recorded her 12th double-double of the season the PLU with 15 points and 14 rebounds, but it wasn't enough to help the Lutes overcome the Pioneers.
With Katelyn Smith scoring six points and Chrissy Swope adding four, the Lutes raced out to a 14-10 lead seven minutes into the game. Lewis & Clark responded with a 14 unanswered points, capped by Neva Houser's three-point basket, to take a 24-14 lead with 9 1/2 minutes left in the opening half. The Pioneers led by double figures for the remainder of the game.
Lewis & Clark led by as many as 21 points in the second half before settling for the 11-point victory.
Potter was Pacific Lutheran's leading scorer and rebounder, and she also tied Sara Backstrom for the team high with four assists. Mackenzie Bieker added 13 points, Smith chipped in 12 points and Swope had 10 for PLU.
Sara Villanueva led four Lewis & Clark players in double figures with 19 points.
Pacific Lutheran closes its 2011-12 season next weekend when it hosts Pacific and George Fox on Friday and Saturday, respectively, with both game set to tip off at 6 p.m.
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