The 2012-13 North Coast basketball season came to a close last
weekend with the DePauw University women’s
basketball team capturing the NCAA Division III National
Championship and The College of Wooster men’s basketball team
bowing out of the 2013 NCAA Div. III Men’s Basketball
DePauw (34-0) bested Wisconsin-Whitewater (26-7), 69-51, to claim the 2012-13 NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball championship at Hope College’s DeVos Fieldhouse in Holland, Michigan. The Tigers victory capped a perfect season and gave DePauw more wins in a single season than any other Division III team in history. The 34 wins breaks the Division III record for wins in a season and the Tigers are the only team in North Coast Athletic Conference history to post an undefeated overall record; they’re the seventh team to do so in NCAA Division III history. The championship is the second for DePauw, which also took home the crown in 2007, and is the first women’s basketball title for an NCAC women’s basketball squad.
DePauw jumped out to an early 25-5 lead and never trailed in the championship game. The Tigers were a dominating 30-for-49 (61.2%) from the field; they hit 4-of-6 (66.7%) three-pointers and were 5-for-12 (41.7%) from the free throw line. DePauw was equally good, if not better on defense. The Tigers snagged 21 defensive rebounds, forced 22 UWW turnovers and snagged 14 steals. Senior forward Ellie Pearson (Madison, WI/West) scored 14 points in the final and also chipped in five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and two steals. She was named the tournament’s most valuable player for her efforts. Senior guard Kate Walker (Indianapolis, IN/Perry Meridian) led the Tigers with 17 points, while sophomore guard Savannah Trees (Libertyville, IL/Libertyville) followed with 16. Walker joined Pearson on the All-Tournament team. Whitewater’s Cortney Kumerow led all scorers with 22 points.
In men’s national tournament action, Wooster (24-6) was eliminated by Cabrini in third round action at Timken Gymnasium by a 70-63 decision. The Fighting Scots shot just 36.7 percent (22-of-60) throughout the evening and were out-rebounded by the Cavaliers by a 45-34 margin. Junior guard Doug Thorpe (Columbus, OH/Eastmoor Acad.) led the Fighting Scots with 21 points, while senior Josh Claytor (Oxford, OH/Talawanda) pulled down a team-high 10 rebounds. Cabrini standout Aaron Walton-Moss tallied 24 points and 12 rebounds to go along with a career-high five steals.