MILWAUKEE -- Wisconsin Lutheran College shot a blistering 62 percent in the opening period for a 14-point halftime lead and cruised to an 85-61 victory over visiting Dominican University in the championship game of the 2012 Northern Athletics Conference Tournament.
The 2012 conference title is the second straight for the North Division champions, who defeated the South Division champs for the third time this season. The Warriors (24-4) also became the league's automatic qualifier in the 2012 NCAA Division III Championship Tournament by securing the conference crown.
The second-seeded Stars (19-9) opened the game with a 4-0 lead, but a quick 8-0 spurt by the top-seeded Warriors put the hosts in front for the rest of the night.
The 21-of-34 first-half shooting performance, along with just one turnover committed, keyed the 48-34 halftime advantage.
Dominican trailed by as many as 20 points early in the second half, but closed the gap to 12 on a steal and layup by Sarah Budz with under 10 minutes to play.
The Warriors quickly answered with sharp outside shooting, including a pair of 3-pointers by Alyssa Allister and Krissy Day, to put the cushion back to 20.
Shavon Dillon hit a 3-pointer in the final seconds of the game and gave the Warriors their largest lead at 85-61. Dillon scored a team-high 18 points and rookie Katelyn Kuehl added 17.
Budz shot 9-of-14 from the floor and led all scorers with 20 points to pace the Stars, while teammate Kayla Blom added 11.
The Warriors, who advanced to the second round of last year's NCAA tournament, will learn their first round destination and opponent during the NCAA.com selection show on Monday.