Westminster Women Win First Tournament, NCAA Berth
Athletic News - Basketball(W)
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Fulton, Mo. – The Westminster College women’s basketball team earned its first-ever bid to the NCAA Division National Tournament by defeating Eureka College 60-54 in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) tournament championship game Saturday evening. It is the first-ever SLIAC tournament title for the Blue Jays (22-4).
Westminster fell behind by seven points early in the first half. But, with 3:35 left in the first half the Blue Jays took their first lead and never trailed, taking a 28-24 advantage into intermission. Westminster held its largest lead at 49-38 with 6:42 left in the game and withstood a late Eureka rally. Senior Rachel Backes (Tipton, Mo./Tipton), who was named Tournament Most Valuable Player, scored 13 points and grabbed three rebounds. Fellow senior Liz Klaffenbach (Battle Ground, Wash./Prairie) recorded a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds to join Backes on the all-tournament team. And, senior Heather Letourneau (Smithton, Mo./Smithton) finished with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Khassandrae Brown finished with 17 points and 19 rebounds to lead Eureka (21-5).
The national tournament field and the locations of host sites will be announced Monday.
MVP-Rachel Backes, Westminster
Liz Klaffenbach, Westminster
Caty Eeten, Eureka
Khassandrae Brown, Eureka
Shelby Ellison, Fontbonne
Courtney Pursley, Webster