The Lawrence University Men’s Basketball team slipped up this weekend and split with a pair of Illinois teams. The Vikings defeated Lake Forest 58-53, but lost on a last second three pointer to Illinois College 70-69. With the loss the Vikings are now in a tie for first place in the MWC with Grinnell, but the Pioneers hold the tiebreaker over the Vikings.Friday night the Vikings and Foresters got off to a slow start. Lake Forest took an early lead, but was quickly shut down by the Vikings defense.
The Vikings offense came alive at the end of the half, and shots started falling. By the half the Vikings had gotten their lead up to nine at 29-20.
The second half was similar to the first half. The Foresters came out hot early, overcame the Viking lead and took their own lead at 35-33.
Their advantage was short-lived. The Vikings stormed back and got their lead back up to 11 at one point.
The Foresters came back again, but it wasn’t enough. The Vikings stayed strong down the stretch and hung on for a 58-53 victory.
The Vikings had three scorers in double figures. Chris MacGillis led the team with 14. Chris Braier and Rob Nenahlo both had 10 apiece for LU.
On Saturday afternoon the Vikings went to Illinois College to see of they could defeat the Blueboys for the second time this season.
The first half of Saturday’s game was all Vikings. LU dominated offensively and defensively. They took their largest lead of the game – 16 points – with 4:36 left in the half; LU led 35-19.
The Blueboys came back near the end of the half, which would be a trend leading into the second half. At halftime the Vikings had an 11-point lead, 41-30.
The second half saw a comeback by IC. The Vikings and Blueboys played evenly for the first 10 minutes, and LU kept their lead at about 10 points.
With 10 minutes to go, IC came back chipping away at the Vikings lead. IC got the gap down to two points, but LU held and slowly brought the lead up again. They couldn’t stop IC, though, as they came storming back again.
The Vikings had a four-point lead with 18 seconds, but missed three free throws that could have put the game away. LU was horrendous from the free throw line, shooting only 50 percent in the second half.
After two Chad Tobin free throws, and two missed free throws for Brendan Falls, the Blueboys had the ball for one last shot, trailing by two.
They got the ball to Drew Petefish, who nailed a three pointer with 1.3 seconds left to give Illinois College the 70-69 victory.
IC big man Garrett Ingram dominated the Vikings inside. He ended up with 27 for the Blueboys.
The Vikings had four players in double figures. Leading the way were Braier and Brent Vandermause with 14 each. MacGillis and Falls each had 10 for the Vikings as well.
The Vikings’ next game is Saturday afternoon at Carroll College. Tip-off is at 5:00 p.m.