BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The basketball season will continue for two Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) teams, as St. Thomas and Gustavus each moved on to the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Tournament over the weekend.
St. Thomas (27-2) cruised past Chapman, 81-51, on Friday night before edging No. 9-ranked Chicago, 68-62, on Saturday. Maddie Wolkow drained a three-pointer with 21 seconds left in regulation to put UST up four, while MIAC Player of the Year Hannah Spaulding posted a 19-point, 17-rebound double-double – hitting two clutch free throws with 13 seconds remaining – to seal the Tommies' 21st consecutive victory. St. Thomas will next face East Texas Baptist (24-6) in Waverly, Iowa on Friday, March 9 at 5:30 p.m. The winner of that game will face the winner of the Trine (26-3) versus Wartburg (29-0) game with a spot in the Final Four on the line the following night.
Gustavus (24-6) topped Rose-Hulman, 60-52, on Friday before beating Wisconsin-Whitewater on the Warhawks' home court, 74-60, on Saturday. The Gusties ended the second round game on a 22-8 run to advance to the Sweet 16. Gustavus guard and four-time All-Conference selection Mikayla Miller made history on Saturday night, posting 21 points to become the Gusties' all-time leading scorer. Gustavus will next match up with Thomas More (28-1) at Hope College in Holland, Mich. Tipoff is set for 5:30 p.m. and the winner will face either Christopher Newport (25-4) or Hope (28-1) in the Elite 8.
The 2018 NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Final Four and National Championship will be hosted by Saint Mary's University at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester, Minn. on March 16-17.
Four other MIAC basketball teams competed in NCAA Tournament action over the weekend as well. The St. Olaf men's program defeated Sul Ross State in the opening round before falling six points short of Wisconsin-Platteville in the second round. Heartbreaking first round losses ended the seasons of Augsburg and Saint John's in the Men's Tournament, while Saint Benedict's season ended at the hands of George Fox University in the opening round of the Women's Tournament.
|2018 NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Tournament Games|
|Friday, March 9||4:30 PM||Gustavus (24-6) vs. Thomas More (28-1)||Hope College (Holland, Mich.)|
|Friday, March 9||5:30 PM||St. Thomas (25-2) vs. East Texas Baptist (24-6)||Wartburg College (Waverly, Iowa)|