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Lutes' Second Half Rally Comes Up Short

Sophomore guard Melissa Pixler.
Sophomore guard Melissa Pixler.

ORANGE, Calif. - Pacific Lutheran rallied in the second half after trailing by 12 at the break, but it came up short in dropping an 80-71 non-conference women's basketball contest to the host Chapman Panthers on Saturday afternoon.

After shooting just 33 percent (9-for-27) in the first half, the Lutes scorched the nets at a 55 percent rate (17-for-31) in the final period, but they couldn't overcome the deficit and fell to 1-5 for the season.

Chapman, which shot 46 percent (26-for-56) for the game, won this one at the foul line. The Panthers were 25-for-37 at the charity stripe, making the most of 28 PLU fouls. Another key factor in the outcome was Pacific Lutheran's 35 turnovers.

Shelly Kilcup tied her career high with 23 points on 8-for-13 shooting from the field and 6-for-6 from the foul line, and she added six steals. Meghan Dowling, seeing her first significant minutes since returning from a preseason ankle injury, scored 14 points and grabbed 13 rebounds in 31 minutes. Tracy Goehri scored 10 points and grabbed eight rebounds and Melissa Pixler added 10 points and four assists for the Lutes.

Simone Ibbotson scored 20 points for the Panthers, who won for the first time in six games this season.

- PLU -