MILWAUKEE - The Wisconsin Lutheran College men's basketball team was held down by a strong defensive effort from Cardinal Stritch in an 80-67 non-conference loss Thursday afternoon at the Recreation Complex.
WLC (4-6) grabbed an early 3-0 lead on a layup and later a foul shot by Jim Marose (Waukesha, Wis./Wisconsin Lutheran) but did not lead again after Derek Semenas' layup with 18:12 remaining in the first half gave Stritch (13-3) a 4-3 lead. Tyler Semanas buried a three-pointer with 14:56 left in the half to cap a 14-0 run and give the Wolves an 18-4 lead. Stritch led by as many as 22 in the half and held a 44-25 advantage at halftime. WLC shot just 24 percent (8-for-33) in the first half and was 0-for-7 on three-pointers.
The Warriors made an early second-half run, using a 9-1 spurt to cut the deficit to 13 with 14:07 remaining. Stritch responded with a 10-0 run to take its largest lead at 63-40 with 11:57 to play. Wisconsin Lutheran shot 48 percent (14-for-29) in the half and was 3-for-6 on threes to outscore Stritch 42-36 in the second half.
Marose led four Warriors in double figures with 15 points and matched a team-high with six rebounds. DJ Escamilla (Hartland, Wis./Arrowhead), Nate Siemers (Nicollet, Minn./Minnesota Valley Lutheran), and Kyle Stelse (Jefferson, Wis./Lakeside Lutheran) scored 10 points apiece.
Derek Semenas scored a game-high 26 points for Stritch, as he was 6-for-6 from the field (4-for-4 on three-pointers) and 10-for-13 at the foul line. Chad Mazur and Alex Morgunov added 12 apiece.
Stritch outshot WLC 44-36 percent for the game. The Wolves held a slight 41-39 edge on the boards and WLC forced 13 turnovers while committing 11.
Wisconsin Lutheran (4-6, 2-4 NACC) returns to the floor Saturday at 2 p.m. to host a Northern Athletic Collegiate Conference game against Dominican (0-10, 0-6 NACC). Live audio, stats, and video will be available on wlcsports.com.