St. Norbert Falls in NCAA Opener to George Fox

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STEVENS POINT, Wis. - St. Norbert College fell behind by 13 points in the first 4 1/2 minutes of the game and couldn't recover in losing 64-54 to George Fox University in a first-round NCAA Division III Tournament game at UW-Stevens Point's Berg Gym.

The Green Knights (21-5) fell behind 16-3 with just 4 minutes 22 seconds gone by to the No. 2-ranked and defending national runner-up Bruins (28-0). St. Norbert was making its 13th NCAA Division III Tournament appearance.

St. Norbert would score the next five points on baskets by Mallory Nickerson, Kyra VandenHeuvel and a free throw from Brianna Byrne to trail 16-8 at 2:23, but George Fox would lead 23-10 at the end of the first quarter.

The Green Knights trailed 27-14 with 5:53 left in the second quarter after a pair of Stephanie Weigman free throws before the Bruins went on an 8-0 run to lead 35-14 with 3:49 remaining. The Bruins would lead 39-21 at halftime.

George Fox would lead 47-23 with 5:03 left in the third quarter before St. Norbert went on a 10-2 run to close out the period. Regan Carmichael's 3-pointer with 23 seconds left in the frame put the Green Knights down 49-33 at the quarter break.

The Bruins still held a 57-42 lead with 7:43 to play before St. Norbert made a last-ditch rally, going on a 9-2 run to trail 59-51 with 2:19 to play. But George Fox would score the next five points to seal the win.

Weigman was the only St. Norbert player to reach double figures with 19 points. Carmichael, Nickerson and Rachel Hagge all had eight points apiece. St. Norbert shot 33.9 percent (20-for-59) from the floor. The Green Knights also held a 39-36 rebounding advantage.

Justin Benner led George Fox with 23 points, while Kim Frost and Kaycee Creech had nine points apiece. The Bruins shot 40.7 percent (24-for-59) from the floor.