The University of Wisconsin-Platteville women's basketball dropped its season opener, 54-44, to Loras Friday night in Dubuque, Iowa.
Senior guard Elizabeth Lawinger led the Pioneers with a game-high 13 points, six assists and three steals. Junior Kim Wellnitz added eight points and five boards, while senior Ashley Henry registered seven points. Loras' Brit Kent netted a team-high 12 points, while Lauren Byrne and Katie Wheeler added 10 points apiece.
Sophomore Rachel Cropp scored her only points of the game to give the Pioneers their only lead of the game, 4-2, at the 15:12 mark. The Duhawks managed to take a 5-4 lead in their next two trips down the floor and wouldn't allow UW-Platteville to take control the rest of the game. Loras took a 35-25 lead into halftime by shooting 52 percent from the floor and 9-10 from the free throw line.
Layups by Lawinger, Wellnitz, Claire Poad and Alyssa Krajco cut the Pioneers deficit to four points, 37-33 with 14:42 left in the contest. The Duhawks quickly put their lead back to double digits and the Pioneers weren't be able to get within eight points in the final 10 minutes. Loras earned its largest lead of the game of 14 points, 49-37, with just less than five minutes left to play. The Pioneers last minute surge was too little to late as the Duhawks sealed the 54-44 victory.
The Pioneers look to bounce back quickly as they face off with Dubuque at 2 p.m. in their final game at the Loras College Tournament.