GNAC Women Game 4: WWU Beats NNU 60-49 in Semis
Corinn Waltrip scored 11 points in Western Washington's semifinal victory.  (Photo by Dab Levine)
Corinn Waltrip scored 11 points in Western Washington's semifinal victory. (Photo by Dab Levine)

Friday, March 8, 2013

LACEY, Wash. – It will be No. 1 versus No. 2 for the Great Northwest Athletic Conference women’s basketball title Saturday at Marcus Pavilion.

Top-seed Western Washington qualified for the title game Friday defeating fourth-seed Northwest Nazarene 60-49.

The Vikings will face No. 2 seed Simon Fraser which ousted Seattle Pacific 66-55 in Friday’s first semifinal game.

Both teams are ranked nationally in the Top 10. The Vikings are sixth in the latest USA Today Sports poll, while the Clan is ranked 10th.

The game will tip off at 5:15 p.m. and will be televised on ROOT Sports.

Center Britt Harris had a team-high 13 points and a game-high 12 rebounds to lead Western (24-3) to its seventh consecutive win and its 18th in its last 19 starts.

The Vikings overcame an early 15-9 deficit by holding NNU scoreless for more than eight minutes and scoring 13 consecutive points to go ahead 22-15 with 5:36 left in the opening period.

The Crusaders responded with a 7-0 run of their own to tie the game at 22-22, but the Vikings then took the lead for good on a three-pointer by Katie Colard with 2:53 remaining in the first half.

WWU held a 31-27 lead at halftime then opened the second half with an 8-2 charge to take a 38-29 lead with 15:54 to play, and led by 10 (43-33)  after a Colard  three-pointer with 12:04 left.

The Crusaders briefly pulled within four at 45-41, but WWU then took control, going on an 11-2 run in a 3:18 span to open up a 56-43 advantage with 3:41 to go. The margin was never less nine points after that.

Harris, who entered the game third nationally in field goal percentage at 59.1 percent, was 6-of-8 from the field. Guard Corinn Waltrip  had 11 points and Colard added 10 to join Harris in double figures.

Western Washington held NNU to just 31.5 percent shooting (17-of-54) from the field, and had a 39-30 advantage in rebounding. 

Megan Hingston was NNU’s only double figure scorer finishing with 21 points. 

The Crusaders, who are 20-8 on the season, will now await word from the NCAA whether they will earn an at-large berth to next week’s NCAA tournament.

NNU was ranked ninth in this week’s regional poll and will have to move up at least one spot to earn a berth.




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