Women's Basketball - Fri, Mar. 17, 2006
Jackson, Tenn. - Sixth-seeded Saint Xavier University (Ill.) scored seven unanswered points in the final 1:40 of play to edge out a 56-53 victory over third-seeded Carroll College (Mont.) in the final game of round one to advance to the second round of the 26th annual NAIA Division I Women's Basketball National Championship at Oman Arena.
Trailing 53-49, Jackie Heine sank a basket and moments late two free throws to tie the game with 55 seconds to play. Andrea Hall attempted to take the lead for Carroll but could not get her shot to fall as Candis Jackson got the rebound and went down the floor to score what proved to be the winning basket with 13 seconds to play. Hall came down to put up another attempt from the right side, but was called for a travel that gave the ball back to the Cougars with four seconds on the clock.
Angie Brown sank her first of two free throws to make it a three point game, which ended as the Fighting Saints ran out of time for a last chance shot, sending maroon jerseys in a swarm of celebration on the court.
Carroll broke out of the halftime with a 28-18 lead and grew it to their largest of the night (31-18) in the first minute of the second period. Saint Xavier overcame the 10 point deficit to out score the Fighting Saints 27-3 to take their first lead of the game (35-34) for a brief moment with 12:23 left.
Carroll regained the lead and held on until Heine's points tied it with just under a minute to play. Saint Xavier made 15-of-30 baskets in the second half after hitting only 5-of-24 in the first half. The Cougars forced 25 Carroll turnovers to their 16 to help pull ahead in the final minutes.
Jackson led Saint Xavier with 19 points, followed by Heine's 13 and Brown's 10 points.
Emili Woody posted a double-double 12 points and 13 rebounds to lead Carroll.
This win is Saint Xavier's first NAIA Tournament victory for women's basketball in program history in their third attempt. They also complete the first round sweep of sixth-seeded teams over third-seeded teams.
Saint Xavier improves to 24-8 on the season and advances to the second round game on Friday at 8 p.m. to face second-seeded Union University (Tenn.) (27-6).