Mar 09, 2012

GEORGE FOX 71, BOWDOIN 55: Bruins Cool Off Polar Bears to Reach 4th Straight “Elite 8”

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)
  • 14 NCAA National Tournament appearances in 16 years (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • 12 Northwest Conference Championships (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018)
  • 25 straight winning seasons (1994-2018)
  • 14 Top 25 national rankings (2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Three NCAA Division III National Coaches of the Year
  • Six NCAA Division III Region Coaches of the Year
  • 11 Conference Coaches of the Year
  • 20 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)

FREDERICKSBURG, Va.Hannah Munger posted a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds, leading the George Fox University Bruins to a 71-55 win over the Bowdoin College Polar Bears in the NCAA Division III National Tournament Sectional Friday here at the William H. Anderson Center and into the “Elite 8” for the fourth year in a row.

George Fox, ranked third in the nation, is now 30-0 and is advancing to the “Elite 8” for the fifth time in history, all since 2005.  The Bruins will meet the the host and seventh-ranked University of Mary Washington Eagles (30-0), who defeated the 17th-ranked Lebanon Valley College Dutchmen 46-41 in Friday's second game, Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time (4:00 p.m. Pacific).   Unranked Bowdoin saw its season end at 21-8, while Lebanon Valley finished at 26-4. 

The winner of Saturday’s game will advance to the “Final Four” Mar. 16-17 at Hope College’s DeVos Fieldhouse in Holland, Mich., the same place the Bruins defeated Washington University-St. Louis 60-53 to win the national championship in 2009. 

The game got off to a slow start offensively, George Fox scoring the only two points of the first four minutes on a layup by Munger.  The Bruins hit only one of their first five shots while the Bears were 0-5, with two of their shots blocked by Munger and Hayley Cusick.  A three-pointer by Jami Roos and a basket by Breezy Rinehart-Young made it 7-0 Bruins before Bowdoin got on the board with a jumper by Alexa Barry at the 14:54 mark.

No one scored for the next three minutes before the Bruins got consecutive goals by Munger, Arianna Mohsenian and Megan Arnoldy for a 13-2 lead with 9:39 left in the half.  Jill Henrikson’s layup ended the Bruin run, and an 8-0 outburst, fueled by threes from Allie Piscina and Henrikson, cut the Bruin lead to 19-16 with 4:39 to go.  An Ellery Gould hook-shot layup made it a two-point game of 23-21 with 1:19 left, but a three by Mohsenian and two Munger free throws gave the Bruins a 28-23 halftime advantage.

A three by Kaitlin Donahoe pulled the Bears within four at 32-28 two minutes into the second half, but then the Bruins got hot.  Over the next five minutes, the Bruins went on a 15-2 run, capped by a three from Cusick, to make it 47-30 with 12:51 left.  Mohsenian hit a last-second jumper and a three to make it a 20-point game at 52-32 with 10:30 to go, and the Bruins remained comfortably in front the rest of the way. 

The Bruins’ largest lead of the game was 23 points at 68-45 following a pair of Gordon free throws with 1:24 to play.  The final score was as close as the Polar Bears got in the final 12 minutes.

George Fox blistered the nets in the second half, hitting .727 (16-22) to finish with an overall field goal percentage of .563 (27-48).  Bowdoin was held to a .345 mark (20-58), and suffered a 40-25 deficit on the boards. 

Munger connected on 7-9 from the field in posting her 13th double-double of the season and 38th of her career, and had game highs of four assists and four blocked shots.  Gordon added 14 points and eight rebounds, Mohsenian scored 12, and Arnoldy had 10. 

Donahoe had 18 points, all in the second half, to pace the Polar Bears, who were playing in their 12th consecutive NCAA Tournament.  Henrikson, Bowdoin’s top scorer on the season, had 14, 10 in the first half.  Each passed out three assists.  Amy Hackett was the Bears’ top rebounder with seven.

NOTES: Gordon continued to add to her George Fox record totals for points (1,710) and steals (286) ... Munger’s blocked shots raised her career total to 317, the Bruins’ record, and moved her passed Hillary Klimowicz of the College of New Jersey into 20th place all-time in Division III ... The George Fox Alumni Association will sponsor a viewing party for the “Elite 8” game in the Klages Dining Hall ... Important links for following the game Saturday:

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