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Second half struggles cost Storm in 62-56 loss to Luther

Second half struggles cost Storm in 62-56 loss to Luther

INDIANOLA, Iowa – A strong first half didn't result in a win for the Simpson men's basketball team as the Storm lost to Luther 62-56 on Wednesday night at Cowles Fieldhouse.

Charles Swain scored 12 points for the Storm (6-10, 1-4 Iowa Conference), who led by 14 at halftime but struggled in the second half. Sam Amsbaugh and Austin Turner had 11 apiece.

Jake Martin scored 12 of his game-high 14 points in the second half for the Norse (5-11, 1-4), who opened the final frame on a 19-3 run after shooting just 22 percent from the field in the first.

Simpson controlled the first half, building a double-digit lead thanks to a strong post game led by Amsbaugh. The freshman scored eight points on 4 of 5 shooting as the Storm outscored Luther 14-2 in the paint and built a 31-17 lead at the break.

The second half was a different story. Luther matched Simpson point-for-point around the rim and Simpson saw its shooting percentage drop from 44.8 in the first half to 27 in the second.

Despite relinquishing the big lead, the Storm still had a chance late in the game. Down 54-48 with about a minute left, Turner converted a three-point to play make it 54-51 with 1:03 left.

Luther's ensuing possession ended in a missed layup by Aaron Huber, but he was able to secure his own rebound, prompting a foul. Huber made both attempts and the Norse hit 8 of 8 from the line in the final 34 seconds to thwart any Simpson comeback hopes.



The loss snapped a three-game home winning streak for the Storm … Simpson out-rebounded Luther 37-36, the first time the Storm have held an edge on the boards in five games … Ryan Skarr's streak of five straight games with a made 3-pointer came to an end as the sophomore went 0-for-1.


Simpson goes to Dubuque on Saturday, Jan. 24. The Spartans (13-3, 3-2) beat Loras 67-55 on Wednesday.

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