MOUNT PLEASANT – Justin Kulwicki scored 30 points and Midland Lutheran (Neb.) College pulled away with an 18-2 run late in the second half to knock off the Iowa Wesleyan College men’s basketball team 76-64 in the Tigers’ home opener Tuesday night at Ruble Arena.
The visiting Warriors controlled the second half after a back and forth first 20 minutes, getting their second win of the season to improve to 2-5. IWC played for the first time in a week and dropped its second straight, falling to 2-4.
Midland Lutheran got a big night from Kulwicki, who entered the game averaging 6.3 points over his team’s first six games. The senior made 11 of 18 shots and matched his season total coming into the game with five three-pointers. He also added nine rebounds as the Warriors won the rebounding battle 50-40, the first time in six games the Tigers have been out-rebounded this year.
The Tigers hung close in a first half that included five ties and nine lead changes. Reggie Shipp (Jr.-Aurora, Ill.) had 17 points in the first half, including three of Wesleyan’s six three-pointers in the first half.
Midland Lutheran scored the final eight points of the first half to take a 40-35 lead into the break. The Warriors led the whole way in the second half, though it was still just a five-point game after Weldon Miller (Jr.-San Rafael, Calif.) tipped in a missed shot to make it 58-53 with 8:05 left.
The Warriors then scored the next ten points, with Kulwicki finishing a run of five straight made shots for MLC with a layup to make it 68-53. After two free throws by Mike Lowe (Sr.-Panora, Iowa), Midland Lutheran scored eight straight, including six free throws to pull out to a 76-55 lead with 4:20 left. The Warriors would not score the rest of the way as IWC scored the final nine points of the contest.
Shipp finished with 22 points to lead Iowa Wesleyan. Miller added 13 points and Lowe paced the Tigers with eight rebounds off the bench. IWC shot 34.9% (22-for-63), including 32.1% from three-point range (32.1%).
Midland Lutheran shot 29 of 72 (40.3%) and hit 9 of 25 three-point tries (36.0%). The Warriors also had 16 offensive rebounds which they converted into 19 second chance points.
Wesleyan now gets ready to host its annual Kiwanis Classic this weekend at Ruble Arena. The tourney starts Friday with Central Methodist (Mo.) University facing Mount Mercy College at 5:30 p.m., followed by the Tigers taking on Logan (Mo.) College of Chiropractic at 7:30 p.m. Saturday’s games include Mount Mercy against Logan at 1 p.m. and IWC hosting Central Methodist at 3 p.m.
For more information regarding the IWC basketball programs or any of the Tiger athletic teams, contact sports information director Adam Glatczak (319-385-6306 phone; 319-385-6384 FAX; firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.
Box score MLC 76 IWC 64