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Thomas More wins third NCAA Division III women's tournament in five years

Posted: 4:20 AM, Mar 17, 2019
Updated: 2019-03-17 08:20:30Z

SALEM, Va. — The top-ranked Thomas More University women’s basketball team won its third NCAA Division III tournament in five years Saturday.

The Saints (33-0) capped an undefeated season by defeating third-ranked Bowdoin College, 81-67, at the Cregger Center on the campus of Roanoke College. The Polar Bears finished 31-2.

Senior forward Madison Temple (Anderson High), the Division III Player of the Year, was named the NCAA Championship’s Most Outstanding Player with 17 points, seven rebounds, four assists and four steals in the final.

Senior guard Shelby Rupp (Batesville High) had a double-double - 17 points and 12 rebounds - to go with four assists and was named to the All-Tournament Team.

Junior guard Kaela Saner (Boone County High) led five Saints in double figures with 20 points.

Junior forward Emily Schultz (Bishop Brossart High) had 14 points and five rebounds.

Sophomore guard Briana McNutt (Mason County High) added 11 points.

Thomas More shot 46.4 percent (26-of-56) from the field, including 45.5 (5-of-11) from behind the arc.

Bowdoin led 19-16 after one quarter and padded its lead to 24-18 with 8:23 to play in the second. But Thomas More closed out the first half on a 20-10 run to go up 38-34 at halftime and never trailed again.

Thomas More won NCAA Division III titles in 2015 and 2016, but the NCAA vacated the first title after declaring three-time Player of the Year Sydney Moss ineligible for the 2014-15 season.