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Saint Francis falls in national tourney

Cougars tripped up by defending champs

Sunday, March 10, 2013 - 12:31 am

A controversial foul call against the University of Saint Francis spurred a massive run by Northwestern College in the NAIA Women's Basketball National Tournament in Sious City, Iowa, and the result was an 87-77 loss for the Cougars.

"I'm proud of the way you played today," Saint Francis coach Gary Andrews told his team afterward.

Northwestern, which is the defending national champion, outscored the Cougars 51-41 in the second half.

"You have nothing to be ashamed of," Andrews added. "You left it all out on the court despite all kinds of adversity. Hold your heads up."

With just under 10 minutes remaining in the game and the score tied at 56, Saint Francis freshman Brooke Ridley apparently took a charge againstNorthwestern's Kendra DeJong. However, after the officials gathered to discuss the play, the call was reversed and instead of DeJong having four fouls, it was Ridley that did.

Andrews protested and was given a technical foul.

DeJong sank 3-of-4 free throws, which gave Northwestern a 59-56 advantage.

The Cougars (32-4) trimmed the lead to one point, however, Northwestern (26-7) responded with a 17-2 tear to put the game away.

Ridley posted her second consecutive double-double, as the Bishop Luers High School graduate scored a team-high 22 points and also grabbed 11 rebounds.

She fouled out with 5:25 remaining.

Saint Francis junior Skylarr Shurn scored 17 points, while senior Kayla Drake added 14 points, junior Jenelle Wilson scored eight, as did junior Jessica Harrison.

Cougar senior Meghan Slusher finished her career with four points, while Kalah Baer scored three points, and Mallory Hester added a point.