Warriors Soar Past Eagles Into Conference Title Game
WLC hosts rival CUW Saturday for trip to NCAA Tournament
February 21, 2013
MILWAUKEE - After winning the opening tip-off, there was no looking back for the Wisconsin Lutheran College women's basketball team as it coasted into the Northern Athletics Conference Tournament championship game by defeating Benedictine 69-47 Thursday at the Recreation Complex. The win set a new school record of 16 straight for WLC as it improved its all-time record to 14-3 in NAC Tournament games.
Trailing 5-4 at the 17:26 mark of the first half, the Warriors rattled off 17 straight points to lead 21-5 with 11:33 left. Senior Shavon Dillon (Milwaukee, Wis./Hope School) started the scoring for the Warriors and continued to perform at a high level throughout the first half, She tallied 10 points and three rebounds. Dillon finished the semifinal contest with a game-high 17 points, four assists, and three rebounds. The Warriors had a solid first half, shooting 14-for-26 (53.8 percent) from the floor, including 4-for-8 from downtown.
The Warriors opened the second half with a 34-21 lead. They never looked back and continued to steamroll the Eagles' defense, scoring 35 second-half points. Late in the second half, Benedictine struggled to make a field goal, going 6:25 without scoring a basket.
Benedictine struggled to keep the Warriors’ lead to anything less the 10 points the entire game. BenU did have two players reach double-digit scoring, but that was not enough to stop the Warriors’ powerful offense. Wisconsin Lutheran led by as many as 24 points (69-45) in the second half. Junior Melissa Klemm (Germantown, Wis./Germantown) came off the bench for WLC to tally 11 points, including three three-pointers.
Sophomore Kristen Schulz (Safford, Ariz./Arizona Lutheran) and junior Melanie Laete (Spokane, Wash./Evergreen Lutheran) dominated the post game with six rebounds each. Senior Carrie Thoma (Richfield, Wis./Hartford Union) led the defense with four blocked shots as the Warriors won the rebound battle 30-28.
For the game, WLC shot 53.1 percent (26-for-49) from the floor, including 47.4 percent (9-for-19) from beyond the arc.
Benedictine (14-13) was led by Michelle Gaede's 16 points. Vincenza Ranallo added 15 points. The Eagles finished the game shooting 34 percent (16-for-47) from the floor.
Wisconsin Lutheran (24-2) hosts second-seeded Concordia Wisconsin (19-8) Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Northern Athletics Conference Tournament championship game. The Falcons defeated Maranatha 47-40 in the other NAC Tournament semifinal game. The winner receives the conference's automatic bid to the 2013 NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Championship Tournament. Fans unable to attend Saturday’s game can follow live audio, stats, and video at wlcsports.com.