MILWAUKEE - The Wisconsin Lutheran College women's basketball team got off to a good start, but No. 2-ranked Washington (Mo.) proved worthy of its ranking, pulling away in the second half as the Warriors fell 79-48 Friday night in the Paul F. Knueppel Classic at the Recreation Complex.
The Warriors (1-1) got out to an early 7-4 lead, and Melissa Klemm (Germantown, Wis./Germantown) scored seven of WLC's first nine points to give them a 9-8 lead with 14:49 left in the first half. WashU (2-0) took the lead back at 11-9 on the next possession and never relinquished it.
WashU went on a 14-3 run to push the lead to 17 at 39-22 with 2:52 remaining in the first half. The Warriors closed the half on a 7-2 spurt to cut the deficit to 41-29 at half. Klemm led the Warriors with eight first-half points. Jordan Rettig scored 11 in the half for the Bears and Melissa Gilkey added 10.
The Warriors were hurt by 10 first-half turnovers and the Bears out-shot them 42-37 percent in the opening stanza. WLC turned the ball over 21 times in the game, leading to 32 points for WashU.
Washington got out to a 7-0 start in the second half and never looked back. An 11-0 burst midway through the half made it a 61-37 lead for the Bears with 10:40 remaining. The Warriors were out-scored 38-19 overall in the half.
Brittanny Bahr (Racine, Wis./Shoreland Lutheran) was 3-for-4 from long distance to lead WLC with 11 points. Klemm, Kristen Schulz (Safford, Ariz./Arizona Lutheran), and Bethany Unkefer (Phoenix, Ariz./Arizona Lutheran) scored eight apiece. Schulz matched a game-high with nine rebounds.
Gilkey led all scorers with 22 points and grabbed nine boards. Rettig added 13 and six rebounds. WashU out-shot the Warriors 42 percent to 33 percent and out-rebounded them 44-33.
Wisconsin Lutheran hosts No. 9 Hope (4-0) Saturday at 3 p.m. to wrap up the Paul F. Knueppel Classic. Live video, audio, and stats will be available on wlcsports.com.