Feb 11, 2017

Spencer Hits Buzzer Beater on Senior Night

A Winning Tradition

  • NCAA D-III National Champions (2009)
  • Three NCAA "Final Four" appearances (2009, 2012, 2015)
  • Six NCAA "Elite 8" appearances (2005, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015)
  • Nine NCAA "Sweet 16" appearances (2000, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016)
  • 13 NCAA National Tournament appearances in 16 years (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • 11 Northwest Conference Championships (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016)
  • 24 straight winning seasons (1994-2017)
  • 13 Top 25 national rankings (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • Three NCAA Division III National Coaches of the Year
  • Six NCAA Division III Region Coaches of the Year
  • 11 Conference Coaches of the Year
  • 18 All-Americans
  • One Academic All-American
  • Three Ad Rutschman Small College Athlete of the Year Finalists (Justine Benner - 2015, Keisha Gordon - 2012, Katy Campbell - 2008)
  • One Ad Rutschman Small College Athlete of the Year Winner (Kristen Shielee - 2009)
  • One George Fox Pasero Team of the Year (2009)
  • One Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year Award (Scott Rueck - 2009 finalist)

NEWBERG, Ore. --- Emily Spencer lifted the George Fox women's basketball team over the Bearcats of Willamette University, Saturday evening, as the freshman hit the go-ahead three at the buzzer to record the 87-84 win.

The opening quarter wasn't one the Bruins were hoping for, as the Bearcats took an early 8-6 lead. Neither team led by more than four points for the first 10 minutes of play as the game was well contested. The Bruins ended the first quarter with a Kaitlin Jamieson layup to take a 15-14 advantage headed into the second quarter.

Each run the Bruins put on, the Bearcats were right there to answer back. Kimberly Frost gave the Bruins a seven point lead after a pair of free throws, 25-18, but Bearcat Marisa Hamilton hit five straight points to bring the score back within two, 25-23. George Fox ended the first half on a 7-0 run to go into the break up by 10, 39-29.

The second half was the best performance the Bearcats have produced from the 3-point line all season. The visitors went 7-9 from the 3-point line in the third quarter and 7-10 from beyond the arc in the fourth quarter. Willamette tied its second best mark in school history from the 3-point line, hitting 16 threes during the 40 minutes of action – 14 coming in the second half.

Despite the red hot shooting from the Bearcats, the Bruins held onto their lead for the entire third quarter. Willamette finally broke through the deficit at the 8:14 mark in the fourth with a three from Sarah Heinly, 65-64.

The score was back and forth for the remainder of the game as fans watched each team trade baskets. Willamette hit a three with nine seconds left to force an 84-84 tie, and the Bruins called a timeout to setup a play with seven seconds left. Kimberly Frost received the inbounds pass and drew the defense towards her. Frost hit a wide open Spencer at the top of the key, and with the ball in the air the buzzer went off. Fans watched as the ball appeared to spin in slow motion, hitting nothing but net to give the Bruins the three point victory.

Top Performers:
Other than Spencer hitting the game-winner, the freshman ended her night with 14 points. Senior Kaycee Creech scored a new career-high on senior night with 22 points. Jamieson finished with 21 points, while Frost finished her senior night with 10 points, four steals and three assists.

What It Means:
The Bruins stand at 19-4 on the season and 11-3 in the Northwest Conference.

What Comes Next:
The Bruins hit the road to take on Whitworth (Feb. 17) and Whitman (Feb. 18) to finish off regular season play.