The Lawrence men’s basketball team went 1-1 last weekend when they traveled to play Knox College and Grinnell College, leaving them 4-6 in conference and 5-9 overall.
The Vikings had faced Knox earlier in the season and suffered a close 68-71 loss, but this time Lawrence dominated the match up.
Lawrence took the lead against Knox with their first basket of the game by sophomore Brian Gryszkiewicz, and held it until their 92-83 victory. The Vikings built up their lead throughout the first half, entering the break after a 3-pointer from Tyler Mazur solidified a big 42-22 lead.
Sophomore Chris Siebert paced the Vikings with 23 points, including 10-10 from the line. The team’s big man, sophomore Davis DeWolfe, added 21 points for the Vikings, and led the team in rebounds with nine. Senior Tyler Crisman poured in 19 points, including five 3-pointers in the second half to help hold the Viking lead. Bringing in 11 points and six rebounds for the Vikings, Lawrence junior and first year player Mazur continued to prove himself. Despite a strong showing against Knox, Lawrence was unable to carry the momentum over into their next game against Grinnell.
Grinnell’s constant full court press and aggressive 3-point method proved to be too difficult for the Vikings to overcome, and the team lost their second match-up of the season against the Pioneers.
Grinnell grabbed the lead with their first shot and held it into halftime with a score of 55-42. Junior Conor Klusendorf and Siebert entered the second half with vigor; teaming up to alternate scoring for ten points each to cut the lead into single digits. After a dunk by Klusendorf to put the Pioneers just nine points ahead, the Vikings slipped and the lead remained in the double digits. Their five-in-five-out substitution kept the Pioneers fresh, and their sporadic playing proved itself in the final 98-74 Grinnell victory.
Once again, Siebert paced the Vikings in scoring with 24 points and again went 10-10 from the line. He also led the team in rebounds with seven and in steals with five. Klusendorf followed closely in points with 22, and Crisman had 10.
On the games, co-captain Klusendorf said, “It was great to get a win from Knox, but losing to Grinnell is always frustrating. We saw flashes of how good we can be, now we just have to keep making those good stretches last longer and happen more often.”
The Vikings hope to see one of those good stretches ahead, as they face up against St. Norbert on Jan. 25 and Carroll on Jan. 28.