For the second time in three years, William Woods (Fulton, Mo.) knocked off a No. 3 seed in the first round of the NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball Championships. The Owls rallied from a 13-point deficit to knock off MidAmerica Nazarene (KS.), 79-75. The NAIA postseason win is only the second in program history at the NAIA DI Championships. The previous was in 2011, when the sixth-seeded Owls upset No. 3 Biola (Calif.).
Junior guard Priscilla Santos came off the bench to lead William Woods’ rally with a career-high 37 points, the most of any player so far in the 2013 NAIA Division I first round. The Owls had the lead for a total of 56 seconds in the game before keeping it for the final 2:21 of play. Each time, it was Santos scoring the go-ahead basket or free throw.
William Woods (26-6) hit 11-of-14 free throws in the final three and a half minutes to take and build its lead for good. Santos was 7-of-8 during the stretch to cap a 22-point second half. She shot 15-of-18 (.833) from the line during the game and 11-of-18 (.611) from the floor. She also added 12 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season.
William Woods will meet Vanguard (Calif.) in the second round on Friday at 4:30 p.m. EDT.