WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Breakfast @ NAIA Tourney Thursday
JACKSON, Tenn. – NAIA No. 20 Trevecca Nazarene (20-11) defeated No. 12 Southern Nazarene University (25-7) by the final score of 85-56 in the first round game at the 28th Annual NAIA Division I Women's Basketball National Championship. The championships are being held at Oman Arena in Jackson, Tenn.
Five players scored in double figures to lead the sixth-seeded Trevecca Nazarene (Tenn.) University Trojans over third-seeded Southern Nazarene (Okla.) University Crimson Storm. The result was the fourth time in the first nine games of the first round in which the lower-seeded team knocked off a higher seed.
For Trevecca’s seniors this was win No. 100. They are now 100-43 in their four-year career. This is also seventh time a Trevecca women’s team has won 20 games. All seven have come in the last nine years. This senior class is the first to win 20 games ever year of their career. Gary Van Atta has led the program to 20 wins in each of his three seasons and now has a 78-23 record at the helm of the program.
Senior guard Mariska Reed scored 14 of her game-high 17 points in the first half, leading Trevecca Nazarene to a 46-25 halftime lead. She was also one of three Trojans players with a game-high nine rebounds, and she dished out a game-high six assists. Sophomore guard Abby Lawson added scored 12 of her 14 points in the opening half, and she finished with nine rebounds, as well.
Southern Nazarene took its only lead of the game at 5-4 on senior guard Ashley Jackson's three-pointer less than two minutes into the game, but Reed's three-point play just 23 seconds later swung the lead to Trevecca Nazarene for good with 17:38 remaining in the first half. Junior center Jennifer Bognar's basket with 10:26 remaining sparked a 9-0 run that turned a four-point lead into a 25-12 advantage with eight minutes to play. The Trojans led by double digits the rest of the way. Southern Nazarene closed to within 15 points at 71-56 with 3:28 remaining in the game following a 13-5 run, but Trevecca Nazarene finished the game with a 14-0 run for the final 29-point margin, its largest lead of the contest.
Southern Nazarene was held to a 24 percent (15-for-62) shooting effort from the field, and no Crimson Storm players finished in double figures. Jackson tallied team-highs of nine points and nine rebounds, and junior guard Kinzie Glover tied for the team-high with nine points, as well.
Archie finished with 13 points, including a trio of three-pointers, and Bognar added 10 points, nine rebounds, two blocks and two steals for Trevecca Nazarene. Freshman forward K.C. Van Atta made a pair of three-pointers and finished with 10 points to go with a game-high three blocked shots.
The win is the fourth consecutive first-round victory for Trevecca Nazarene, which improves to 20-11 on the season, while Southern Nazarene finishes the season 25-7 overall. The Trojans advance to Friday's Sweet 16, where they will take on the second seeded Langston University (Okla.) in a 9 a.m. contest.
TNU and SNU are sister-Nazarene schools and have met seven times in women's basketball, with the Trojans now leading the series 4-3. The two teams last met in Oklahoma during the 2005-2006 season. Trevecca won that game 79-50. The teams have met in the NAIA Championships once before during the 2004-2005 season. Trevecca won the second round game 80-64. The win shocked the NAIA as TNU defeated the two-time defending National Champions.
Gary Van Atta Quotes
On Preparing for NAIA’s Winningest Program – Southern Nazarene
“We feel like this team is as prepared as any team we’ve had coming into this tournament. We controlled the tempo of the game from start to finish with our defense.”
On having a week between games
“We worked hard and our team has had a great attitude coming into these championships.”
Leadership of upper classmen
“I thought we had great examples of effort from three of our starting upper classmen. Mariska Reed set the tone in the first half. Kristin Archie brought that same intensity in the second half and Jennifer Bognar gave a consistent effort throughout.”
On the teams balance of contributions
“We have to have everyone contribute and we did today. We had five players score in double-figures and had three players one rebound away from hitting double figures. That is a team effort and if we do that good things happen for this team.”
“We felt before the season we would have depth by the end of the season and it is starting to show. We had great contributions on the bench and two players (Abby Lawson and K.C. Van Atta) to reach double figures in scoring off the bench, but it wasn’t just points. We had several players contribute in ways other than scoring.”
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For more information on the Championships, click here
Trevecca is making its ninth consecutive trip to the NAIA Women's Basketball Championships since reinstating the women's program just 12 years ago. Coach Gary Van Atta is returning to the tournament for the eighth time. This is the third trip for Van Atta with the Trojans. He led Montevallo (now NCAA D-II) to five consecutive trips to the NAIA tournament. He led Montevallo to the Fab Four, two Elite Eight's and one Sweet Sixteen. In all, Van Atta has a 12-7 record at the NAIA Tournament. The Trojans are 10-6 in NAIA Tournament play. Trevecca has been to a Sweet Sixteen (2000) and to the Elite Eight in each of the last three years.
All games are broadcast over 89.1 and 91.5 WNAZ FM. All games are aired on the internet atwww.wnaz.com All home games have a statistical webcast available at www.tnutrojans.com