Women take out Bearcats, fall to Wildcats

TYLER SCOTT, Director of Athletic Communications

Game 1

Junior Megan Abdo scored the final five points of the game, including the game-winning layup, as Pacific Lutheran University claimed a 65-64 buzzer-beating women’s basketball victory over Willamette in Northwest Conference action Friday evening at Cone Field House.
The win gave the Lutes the 2014-15 season sweep of Willamette, with both wins coming in thrilling fashion for the Lutes after they defeated the Bearcats in double-overtime last month in Parkland.
PLU improves to 5-17 overall and 2-11 in conference play, while Willamette falls to 6-17 overall and 1-13 in the NWC.
PLU heads to McMinnville, Ore. on Saturday for the final road game of the season, as the Lutes take on Linfield at 4 p.m.
A pair of Jojo DeLong free throws gave Willamette a 64-60 lead with 27 seconds to play and appeared to close out the game for the Bearcats. But Abdo had other plans, as she hit a three-pointer to pull PLU within one with 17 seconds remaining.
After sophomore Taylor Talen stole the ball from DeLong, Abdo missed a layup in the closing seconds only to collect her own rebound and put it back in as time expired to clinch the win for PLU.
The game featured eight lead changes and five tie scores, with Willamette taking its largest lead three minutes into the second half at 42-31.
PLU followed with eight straight points before Willamette countered by scoring six straight.
The Bearcats eventually matched their game-high, 11-point lead midway through the half following a three-pointer by Ashley Evans.
PLU held Willamette scoreless for the next four minutes, and a first-year Bailey Raines three-pointer sparked a six-point PLU run to make it a five-point game.
Kelsey Walker’s jumper ended the Willamette drought before junior Tayler Flemming hit a three-pointer to pull PLU within four at the four-minute mark.
Willamette free throws and a DeLong layup helped the Bearcats maintain a cushion, but Abdo took over and scored the Lutes’ final 10 points of the day. She finished the night with 14 points to go with seven rebounds and four assists, while Flemming added 12 points.
Junior Sarah Barnes scored 11 on 5-of-6 shooting, and sophomore Lacey Nicholson tallied 10 points.
DeLong led Willamette with 15 points, while Kylie Towry posted a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Julia Brand scored 13.
The Bearcats held a 36-29 halftime lead before PLU outscored Willamette 36-28 in the second period. Willamette finished the night with a .436 team shooting percentage (24-of-55), while PLU shot 38.2 percent from the field (26-of-68).

Game 2

Pacific Lutheran University shot 23.8 percent for the game as the Lutes fell to Linfield 79-53 in Northwest Conference women’s basketball action Saturday evening at Ted Wilson Gymnasium.
One day after defeating Willamette on a buzzer-beater layup by junior Megan Abdo, the Lutes’ junior point guard made four of her six three-point attempts to record a team-best 18 points.
Sophomore Taylor Talen added 10 for the Lutes, who recorded a season-low 23.8 percent overall shooting mark (15-of-63) after making only six of 37 shot attempts in the second half (16.2 percent).
Dani Krier posted a double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Jessica McMillan scored 18 and Genna Hughes added 10 for the Wildcats.
Linfield shot 58.1 percent in the second period to finish the day at 52.5 percent overall (31-of-59).
Linfield scored the first six points of the game before a three-pointer by sophomore Madison Green-Hayward got the Lutes on the board. A three-pointer by Abdo helped bring PLU even closer before a layup by sophomore Lacey Nicholson tied the score at 8-8.
PLU actually continued the run with six more points to use a 14-2 run that gave the Lutes the six-point lead.
Linfield tied it back up at 16-16, with the final tie of the night coming at 23-23 following a layup by Junior Jori Hall.
The Wildcats proceeded to score the next 10 points to take a 33-23 lead late in the period, while the Lutes scored the final four points of the period on free throws by junior Tayler Flemming and Green-Hayward to trail 33-27 at the break.
The Lutes scored the first four points of the second period to pull within two at 33-31 following another three by Abdo, but Linfield scored the next eight points to push its lead back to double-digits.
PLU hung close for the next eight minutes, drawing as close as five back at 52-47 midway through the period following a layup by junior Sarah Barnes.
But the Lutes made only one more basket the rest of the way, as Linfield closed the game on a 27-6 run to claim the win.
PLU falls to 5-18 overall and 2-12 in conference play, while Linfield improves to 10-13 overall and 4-10 in the NWC. The Lutes head home for their final games of the season next weekend, hosting Whitworth on Friday at 6 p.m. and Whitman on Saturday at 4 p.m.

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Junior Megan Abdo scored 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists as the Lutes beat the Willamette Bearcats 65-64 on Feb. 13.

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