Lutes finishing out winter sports season in style

January has come and gone. Last month provided Pacific Lutheran University students with a lot to talk about. Whether it was studying away in Antarctica or witnessing the Seattle Seahawks demolish the Denver Broncos in every conceivable way, January was an eventful month.

February is now upon us, and that means school is back in session. Winter sports are nearing the end of their season. Let’s take a look at how these sports teams have fared during January.

Men’s basketball:

In his eighth season as the head coach of the PLU basketball team, Steve Dickerson has guided his team to a 7-14 record thus far. With only four games remaining in the regular season schedule, it’s become apparent that the Lutes will not be making the postseason yet again.

During their 2013-2014 season, the Lutes have suffered two separate five-game losing streaks. It hasn’t been all bad news for the men’s basketball team though. Senior Arvid Isaksen leads the team in several statistical categories, like rebounds (6.1) and steals (1.0) per game.

Isaksen is making his case to earn Northwest Conference accolades at season’s end. The Lute faithful shouldn’t be depressed with how the PLU men’s basketball team has played this season though. The team will only graduate three seniors next year, so this team is still young. With a first-year class of eight players, this team should be consistent for the next few years.

Women’s basketball:

The season isn’t over, but the PLU women’s basketball team already has one more win than last year’s campaign. Part of that success can be attributed to first-year coach Jennifer Childress.

Childress came to PLU from Division II basketball powerhouse Western Washington University. It’s fair to say Childress is accustomed to success. Another person who has familiarized herself with success is senior Samantha Potter. The explosive forward is enjoying a season similar to that in 2012-13, when Potter received second team All-Northwest Conference honors.

This season, Potter is averaging about 17 points and nine rebounds per contest. She is one of the reasons why the Lutes are hovering around .500 this season.

Even though the Lutes have vastly improved from last year’s dismal season, an appearance in the postseason will have to wait. Much like the men’s basketball team, the women’s basketball team will graduate only three seniors. The women’s roster is ripe with youthful talent, so brighter days are sure to arrive.

Men’s swimming:

After going undefeated in December, the PLU men’s swim team opened up their 2014 schedule against Whitman. PLU competed against one of the best teams in the Northwest Conference, as Whitman has an experienced roster filled with talent.

Whitman beat PLU 111-94. First year Hunter Cosgrove was one of the few PLU swimmers to come in first in their respective event. Cosgrove placed first in the grueling event only known as the 1650 freestyle.

Whitworth proved to be a tough test for PLU as well. The Lutes lost 131-74. First-year Brian Ruggles finished first in both the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle, winning multiple points for the Lutes.

The NWC Championships are fast approaching, as the Lutes will travel to the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center today.

Women’s swimming:

Sophomore Hanna Armstrong has been leading the pack this season. In their first meet of January, the Lutes squashed Whitman 131-74. Armstrong picked up two first place finishes in the 200-yard and 500-yard freestyle events.

Even though the Whitworth Pirates dismantled the Lutes by 115.5-89.5, Armstrong picked up a first place finish in the 200-yard freestyle. She was also part of the 400-yard freestyle relay team that swept the competition. The women will compete in the NWC Championships today. 🅼

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