Men's basketball rally comes up short against Luther
Michael Abdella November 19, 2012
NORTHFIELD, Minn.- After trailing by 22 late in the second half, the St. Olaf men's basketball team mounted a furious rally but came up short in an 81-75 loss to Luther on Monday night at the Skoglund Center.
Two free throws by Tyler Wedemeier gave Luther a 68-46 lead with 6:56 to play, but St. Olaf then went on a 21-7 run over the next five and a half minutes to get within eight with 1:37 to play. However, Luther made enough free throws down the stretch to hang on for the win.
The run was keyed by a full-court press that caused most of Luther's 19 turnovers. First-years Riley Aeikens and Justin Pahl combined for 11 points during the spurt.
After taking a 35-32 lead into halftime, Luther dominated the first 12 minutes of the second half. The Norse held the Oles scoreless for a four-minute stretch midway through the second half to turn a 52-44 lead into a 64-54 advantage, before St. Olaf went on their run.
John Androus led four Norse players in double figures with 18 points and eight rebounds. Tyler Wedemeier added 16 points and 16 boards, as the Norse controlled the glass by a 41-26 margin. Zach Matos and Michael Crocker scored 14 and 13, respectively.
St. Olaf also had four players in double figures, led by Sterling Nielsen's 21 points and five assists. The sophomore went 9-16 from the field to record his second straight 20+ point game. Aeikens scored 17 on 6-14 shooting. Connor Gunderson added 13 and Pahl added ten points off the bench.
Luther (3-0) shot 54.9% (28-51) from the field for the game, while St. Olaf (1-2) shot 43.3% (29-67). The Norse outscored the Oles 20-10 from the free throw line, but committed 19 turnovers to just five for St. Olaf.
The Oles open MIAC play at Saint Mary's on November 28th. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 pm in Winona.