A lid covered the rim — literally.
For all the rebounding drills University of Puget Sound women’s basketball coach Loree Payne had planned for her team during practice Monday, she made sure the basketball was covered.
Then, to hammer home how important rebounds are, Payne sent her team a YouTube clip of the Arkansas men’s team’s tip dunk with 0.2 seconds left in overtime to defeat No. 13 Kentucky on Tuesday night.
So after being thrashed in rebounding in consecutive losses to Whitworth and Whitman, the Loggers flipped the script against Pacific Lutheran, crashing the boards on their way to a 70-51 home Northwest Conference win Wednesday night. UPS finished with 10 more rebounds (44-34) and grabbed 18 on the offensive end.
“That was our No. 1 focus coming in,” Payne said. “Our goal was to outrebound PLU by 10, and we did that. Our goal was to get 10 or more (offensive) boards, and we got 18. So they responded.”
UPS (9-5, 2-3 NWC) was outrebounded by 13 against Whitworth and by 19 against Whitman in two conference losses.
But against PLU (5-9, 1-4), the Loggers first needed to figure out how to score.
Sam Potter, who had 19 points and 13 rebounds, helped the Lutes jump out to an 8-0 lead. UPS didn’t score until the 16:12 mark, on Emily Sheldon’s layup.
Then the Loggers took off, getting contributions off the bench from Erin Stumbaugh and Alexis Noren. Stumbaugh led the way with 15 points, Noren had seven, and UPS led, 37-26, at halftime.
UPS had a slight first-half edge in rebounds but controlled the glass in the second half on its way to a second NWC victory.
“Monday (practice) was strictly about rebounding, and it paid off because we rebounded the heck out of the ball tonight,” Stumbaugh said.
At UPS 77, PLU 70: Loggers coach Justin Lunt yelled, “They want it more,” after PLU’s Bryce Miller grabbed a rebound off a teammate’s miss. He screamed it after Miller then grabbed his own rebound, put it up and made it to tie the score at 70 with 2:20 left.
Lunt shouted it one more time for emphasis as his team brought the ball up the floor. The Lutes didn’t score again.
On the ensuing possession, Dan Cheledinas sank a layup in the lane, was fouled and made the free throw, and the Loggers (7-7, 3-2 NWC) held on behind their defense to pick up the win.
“I thought (PLU) wanted it more at that time,” Lunt said. “But I thought our guys did a great job of persevering, they trusted each other defensively, and we really executed toward the end.”
Five UPS players scored in double figures – AJ Maw (15), Erin Barber (13), Rex Nelson (13), Keith Shattuck (13) and Cheledinas (12). Daniel Landram led PLU (4-10, 1-4) with 12 email@example.com