The weekend before Turkey Day, the Lawrence men’s basketball team recorded two victories over Dominican and Concordia Colleges.Lawrence beat Dominican handily 87-72 on Friday, and skated past Concordia 72-68 Saturday in the River Forest Classic.
Apparently new head coach Joel Depagter knows what he is doing.
These debut regular season wins have created a buzz of optimism surrounding this week’s practice — great vibes for a Lawrence team that will travel all the way down to Lake Forest Friday, Nov. 30, and then to Monmouth on Saturday.
Lawrence came into rhythm midway through the second half against Dominican led by a big score from guard Jamie DeMatthew, and then a big rebound on the other end.
Senior Andy Hurley had a game-high 9 rebounds and lit it up with 15 points. Senior guard Ben Rosenblatt tied that with 15 of his own, and junior Ryan Kroeger added 11 points, as the Vikings ran past Dominican late in the game.
Lawrence went on a 13-6 run in the first half to jump ahead early, but Dominican did not lie down, persisting enough to cut the lead to three with 12:44 remaining.
After that, it was all LU as Ryan Wendel sank a jumper and Tommy Schmidt drilled a Tre. The wick was lit, and Lawrence stayed on fire scoring the next nine points as Kroeger launched a three-point missile for the grand finale.
Great defense shut the door on Dominican not letting them within 12 points as the Vikings took care of business winning the seventh of their last eight season openers.
Ben Rosenblatt never cooled down Friday night. Saturday, he clinched the win against Concordia with a three-pointer in the last seven seconds of the game.
John Dekker came off the bench to score 14 points, and LU built its biggest lead in the first half to 37-26 with a pair of free throws from Jayce Apelgren.
Rosenblatt came out of the locker room smoking, opening the second half with a three ball to give LU the biggest lead of the night.
But Concordia was pesky and went on a 9-1 run with four minutes left in the game. If it weren’t for Chris Page’s 15 points and Rosenblatt’s clutch three-point shooting the Vikes may have been run over by the rolling Cobbers.
The Vikes play at Lake Forest this weekend. Lawrence split with Lake Forest last year making this next game an anticipated and interesting rivalry.
The men’s basketball team obviously hopes to remain undefeated in the regular season, and go undefeated in conference play this weekend. Any fan support is appreciated — come out and show your colors.