Tabor women suffer quarterfinal loss to Southern Oregon

Tena LoewenThe Tabor College women?s national tournament run came to an end Saturday with a 73-67 loss to Southern Oregon in the NAIA Division II national championship quarterfinals.

Southern Oregon, who came into the tournament with only one loss, accomplished what few have been able to against the Bluejays.

The Raiders matched Tabor?s own defensive intensity with a press so restricting it left the Bluejays flustered and off-balance. In fact, Tabor won nearly every statistical category in the game, but the Bluejays? 22 turnovers told the story.

Tabor turned it over 14 times in the first half, including on the game?s first possession, but with three consecutive baskets, Tabor took a 6-2 lead. However, the Raiders scored 12 unanswered points after that, with the Bluejays committing five turnovers in that stretch alone. The teams traded scores the rest of the way, giving Southern Oregon a 20-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.

The Raiders? leading scorer, Ashley Claussen, left the game with an injury less than one minute into the second quarter, but Southern Oregon built its lead to double digits, 31-20. Tena Loewen and Kaleigh Troxell scored in succession, and the half ended with the Raiders leading, 33-26.

Claussen attempted to start the third quarter, but left the game within 12 seconds and did not return the duration of the game. Tabor used an 11-4 run to tie the game at 37, and Tabor took its first lead since the first quarter when Jurnee Reid scored at the 3:37 mark. The teams traded scores.

Following a 47-47 tie, however, Tabor committed back-to-back turnovers, allowing the Raiders to regain the advantage, 52-47 in a 30-second span. Kayla Wilgers answered with a three-pointer to bring the Bluejays within 52-50 at the final break.

Southern Oregon built its lead to six, 64-58, with 6:13 to play. Taylor Hurd drained a trey, and when Amber Bonham made two free-throws, Tabor was within one, 64-63. The Bluejays played solid defense, forcing two SOU misses, but could not secure a rebound. SOU scored on its third attempt to push its lead to three. Loewen responded with a basket that made it 66-65 with 3:25 to go.

With a chance to take the lead, Tabor committed three turnovers and missed one shot on its next four possessions. SOU made just one free-throw during that stretch and held a 67-65 lead with less than a minute to play. The Raiders scored again at the 35-second mark to build their lead to four, 69-65, and Tabor?s next two shots missed their mark. Tabor then began sending the Raiders to the charity stripe. Two Raider free-throws extended it to 71-65, then the Bluejays turned it over.

After the Raiders missed their next two free-throw attempts, Bonham was fouled on a desperate attempt at a three-pointer. She made two of three charity shots with 1.5 to play to bring Tabor within 71-67, and the Raiders hit two final free-throws to bring it to the final, six-point spread.

Loewen led all scorers with 18 points on 9-for-9 shooting, and added 12 rebounds. Hurd scored 12 points, and Morgan Ediger 11.

Tabor concludes the season with an overall record of 28-8.

Written By
More from Janae Rempel
Warriors finish second at Hesston
The Marion wrestling team earned second place at the Hesston Swather Invitational...
Read More