Senior guard Mike Rueffer's 13 points led four Foresters in double figures as the Lake Forest College men's basketball team fell 64-58 at St. Norbert College, the 14th-ranked team in the nation, Tuesday night.
Rueffer made three of five attempts from three-point range and connected on a long two-point basket at the first half buzzer to give the visitors a 33-27 lead. St. Norbert had led by as many as seven points in the opening period but eight straight points by the Foresters gave them an 18-17 advantage. The Green Knights went back ahead by five before Lake Forest closed out the half with a 12-1 run.
Back-to-back baskets by Forester sophomore forward Danny Sotos early in the second half gave Lake Forest its largest lead of the contest at 38-31. The home team then outscored the Foresters 18-7 over the next seven minutes and eventually made it a five-point game with two-and-a-half minutes to play. A field goal by sophomore guard Jordan Moran, a steal by Sotos, and a three-pointer by Rueffer tied the score at 58 with just over a minute left. The visitors would not score again, however, and St. Norbert shot 6-for-6 from the foul line in the final minute to secure the victory.
Moran finished with a dozen points while Sotos and senior forward Jim Schick added 10 apiece. Schick led all players in the contest with eight rebounds but the Green Knights had a 36-32 advantage on the boards in the game. It ended the Foresters' 10-game streak of out-rebounding their opponent.
Lake Forest shot exactly 40 percent from the floor while St. Norbert was successful on 47.8 percent of field goal attempts. Both teams made six three-pointers with the Foresters needing 19 attempts and home team 16. The Green Knights went to the free throw line 26 times but made just 14 attempts while the visitors were just 4-for-7.
Lake Forest fell to 12-10 overall and 10-7 in Midwest Conference play this season. St. Norbert improved to 18-4 overall and 15-2 in the league, clinched at least a share of this year's conference title, and earned the right to host the 2017 MWC Tournament.
The Foresters will host Lawrence University Saturday afternoon at 3:00 with the winner claiming a spot in the four-team conference tournament.