Knueppel Collects 300th Win, Warriors Advance To NACC Final

Photo Credit: Jeff Wilson
Photo Credit: Jeff Wilson

MILWAUKEE (WLCSports.com) - Fifteenth-year head coach Klay Knueppel earned his 300th career coaching victory as the top-seeded Wisconsin Lutheran College women's basketball team defeated fourth-seeded Dominican 69-41 Friday night in a NACC Tournament Semifinal matchup inside the Recreation Complex. Jen Dowden (Bonduel, Wis.) tied for a game-high 15 points to lead three Warriors in double figures.

  • Final Score: Wisconsin Lutheran 69, Dominican 41
  • Records: Wisconsin Lutheran (25-1), Dominican (17-10)
  • Location: Recreation Complex, Milwaukee, Wis.

  • Despite never trailing in the game, the Warriors started slow and led just 4-0 nearly three minutes into action. With the score knotted at 8-8 with 2:03 left in the first quarter, Wisconsin Lutheran scored eight straight and carried a 16-10 lead into the second period.
  • WLC held the Stars without a point for the first 5:23 of the second quarter, extending its lead to 19 points at 29-10. The Warriors later increased their lead to 21 points after a pair of Maddy Elrod (Conifer, Colo.) free throws. The hosts went into halftime doubling up the Stars with a 38-19 lead thanks to 66.7 percent (8-for-12) shooting in the quarter.
  • A 7-2 run by the Stars midway through the third quarter brought them within 18 points with 3:47 left to play. Wisconsin Lutheran, which shot a blistering 71.4 percent in the quarter, pushed its lead back up to 24 points before carrying a 52-30 lead into the fourth.
  • Fifteen of WLC's 17 fourth-quarter points came from beyond the arc as the hosts shot 71.4 percent from deep. Tierney Woodward (Poynette, Wis.) and Ally Gough (Horicon, Wis.) each drained a pair of triples and Kalies Birkholz (Watertown, Wis.) also connected from long range. The Warriors built their largest lead of the game of 28 points following Gough's trifecta with 1:50 left in the game.

  • Dowden netted 15 points to pace three Warriors in double figures. Maddy Elrod added a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Woodward connected on three triples for 11 points off the bench.
  • Kelly Tramburg (Fall River, Wis.) chipped in nine points and Lexi Reinke (Bonduel, Wis.) filled the box score with seven rebounds, six points, and six assists.
  • The Warriors shot 47.9 percent (23-for-48) overall for the game, including 41.2 percent (7-for-17) from long distance and 84.2 percent (16-for-19) from the free throw line.
  • WLC out-rebounded DU 43-26 and out-scored the visitors 16-5 in points off turnovers.
  • Knueppel earned his 300th career coaching victory in his 412th game. He owns a winning percentage of .728.

  • Stephenee Huggins tied a game-high with 15 points to pace the Stars, while Samantha Wessel added 10 points off the bench.
  • Dominican was held to just 28.6 percent (16-for-56) shooting in the contest.

  • The Warriors advance to Saturday's NACC Tournament Final where they will host third-seeded Concordia Wisconsin (19-8), a 90-63 winner over second-seeded Lakeland in Friday's other semifinal. It will mark the fifth time the two teams will meet for a NACC Tournament title. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Live stats and video will be available at WLCSports.com.