By Slone Masters, National Championship Event Assistant
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – (Box Score) Top seeded Davenport (Mich.) rolled past Ave Maria (Fla.), 94-40, at Sioux City's Tyson Event Center in the first round of the 2014 NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Championship. The Panthers now advance to the second round and will play the winner of Purdue Calumet (Ind.) and Oregon Tech on Friday at 3:30 p.m. CDT.
Alex Law led the way for Davenport which had four players in double figures. Law finished with 18 points, hitting 6-of-9 from the three point line. Alison Bouman grabbed eight rebounds and Kia Frazier had five steals for the Panthers.
The Panthers opened the game with a 37-8 run over the course of the first 10 minutes of action. Davenport grew its lead to as many as 42 during the half en route to a 59-18 advantage at the break. Ave Maria cut into the lead early in the second half, but was unable to slow the Panther offense down the stretch.
Ave Maria was paced by Erin Murphy with 10 points – the only player in double figures. Annie Artise had 10 rebounds for the Gyrenes, which was a game high. The Gyrenes, who shot only 24 percent (13-of-54) from the field, has 28 turnovers and gave up 38 points in the paint.
The Panthers win their 27th game in a row never trailing to the Gyrenes. Davenport shot only 14-of-26 (.538) from the free throw line but hit 33-of-71 (.465) from the field.
Ave Maria, which received an automatic berth to the national championship after winning The Sun Conference Tournament title, ends the year with a 23-11 record.