SIOUX CITY, Iowa - No. 2 Saint Francis used a stifling defensive effort to hold Reinhardt (Ga.) to shoot 23.3 percent from the floor in the second half and defeat the Eagles 62-42 to advance to the second round of the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball national championship at the Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa.
Saint Francis was led by Kayla Drake, who scored a game-high 21 points. The Cougars forced the Eagles into 21 turnovers, leading to 15 points. The Cougars led by as many as 22 late in the second half.
Reinhardt, making its first appearance in the national championships, shot 45.5 percent in the first half but could not overcome the 10-point halftime deficit. The Cougars held the Eagles' Tara Hay to nine points, on 3-of-18 shooting from the floor. Hay entered the tournament averaging 15.1 points per game.
The Cougars advance to the second round where they will face Saint Xavier (Ill.) at 1 p.m. Friday.