The seventh-seeded College of the Ozarks (Mo.) recorded its third-straight upset, beating No. 1 seedNorthwestern (Iowa), 90-69, in the quarterfinals of the 2014 NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball National Championship. The Bobcats are the lowest seed to reach the semifinals since the current tournament format was established in 2003.
The Bobcats set a new NAIA championship record with 40 free throws in the contest. Senior guard Emily Walker, who entered the quarterfinals averaging only 8.5 points per game at this year’s national championship, led the Bobcats with 22 points. The Nixa, Mo., native connected on only three field goals, but was 15-for-16 at the free line. Freshman guard Alice Heinzler from Republic, Mo., finished with 21 points, freshman guard Jeana Raper, also from Nixa, scored 16 points and junior guard Kayla Kepler, from Fair Grove, Mo., ended with 15 points.
Overall, the Bobcats shot 40.8 percent from the field, 45.5 percent from three-point range and 87.0 percent at the free throw line.
The margin of defeat is the largest championship history for Northwestern, which has previously reached the at least the semifinals in six-straight seasons.
The Bobcats will face No. 1 Davenport (Mich.) Monday at 8 p.m. CDT. That semifinal contest will be broadcast live on ESPN3.