Feb 23, 2017

No. 22 Bruins Drop NWC Semifinal to No. 21 Blues

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)

Photo Taken By: Jake Ryan 

NEWBERG, Ore. --- It wasn't the outcome the No. 22 George Fox Bruins were hoping for Thursday, as the No. 21 Whitman Blues made a second half comeback to take the Northwest Conference semifinal game, 78-71.

The Blues were the first to strike in the opening quarter, taking a 6-0 lead in the first two minutes. The Bruins settled in midway through the first quarter, though, and answered the Blues' run with a run of their own from the 6:27 mark to the 4:55 mark to take a 9-6 lead. The Bruins held the lead going into the second quarter with a 20-15 advantage.

The Bruins kept their hot shooting going in the second quarter, as the squad shot 50 percent from the field, while the Blues rattled off 31.8 percent. The Bruins kept the lead for the full 10 minutes utilizing their bench, as Haylee Hutzler led the way with six in the quarter.

George Fox went into the break with a four point lead, 37-33.

The tables turned in the second half, as the visiting Blues came out shooting 50 percent from the field, while the Bruins hit 28.6 percent. The Bruins kicked off the quarter with eight straight points from Kaycee Creech, but then the Blues went on a 21-7 run to retake the lead going into the fourth, 56-52.

The Blues were able to keep the Bruins out of reach for most of the fourth, but Creech delivered a huge three at the 3:29 mark to put the Bruins down by five, 67-62. The Blues were sent to the free throw line for the next two minutes, as the Bruins tried to slowly chip away at the score. Hailey Hartney and Tavin Headings connected for two huge three with less than a minute left, and the Bruins had hope with the deficit down to three, 74-71. Time wasn't kind to the Bruins, as the home team was forced to foul, and the Blues secured the win on the free throw line.

Top Performers:
Creech finished the game as the only Bruins in doubles figures with 17, going 6-12 from the field and a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line. She also grabbed 10 rebounds to record her first double-double of her career. Both Kaitlin Jamieson and Kimberly Frost finished with eight points.

What It Means:
With the loss, the Bruins must wait to see if they receive an At-Large into the NCAA Division III Tournament. The Blues head to Tacoma to face No. 1 seed Puget Sound Saturday, Feb. 25, at 7p.m.

What Comes Next:
The Bruins fate will be announced during the selection show Monday, Feb. 27, at 11:30a.m.