LEXINGTON, KY – The Hanover College women's basketball team ran away from host Transylvania, 83-66, on Sunday afternoon at the Beck Center to win the 2013 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Women's Basketball Tournament Championship. With the victory, Hanover earned the conference's automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Tournament set to begin next week.
Hanover, the No. 3 seed of the tournament, jumped out on top seed Transylvania 21-7 midway through the opening half and led 47-24 at the break. The Panthers hot shooting continued in the second half to secure the school's second women's basketball HCAC tournament title.
Leading the way for Hanover was senior forward Katie Gahimer (Greensburg, Ind./North Decatur). The senior scored a team-high 28 points and grabbed six rebounds, earning the tournament Most Valuable Player award for the first time. Sophomore guard Alicia Hopkins (Columbus, Ind./East) chipped in 23 points and six rebounds in the win and was named to the all-tournament squad.
The Panthers shot 48% from the field and held Transylvania to 34% shooting from the floor in the win. Hanover connected on 11 of their 21 attempts from behind the arc to help pull away from the Pioneers.
Sophomore guard Madisen Webb (Georgetown, Ky./Scott Co.) led Transy with 19 points and four rebounds in the championship game, earning a spot on the all-tournament team. Freshman guard Katelyn Smith (Hazard, Ky./Perry Co. Central) joined Webb on the all-tournament squad, scoring 15 points with eight rebounds in the loss.
Manchester University's Erynn Meiklejohn (Ft. Wayne, Ind./Concordia) and Franklin College's Krista Schott (Indianapolis, Ind./Perry Meridian) earned the final spots on the all-tournament team for their efforts during the weekend.
Hanover, under head coach Molly Jones, improved to 21-7and will make the trip to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the second time since 2011 and third time in school history.
The announcement of the Division III women's basketball field will be presented via webcast on www.ncaa.com beginning at 2:30 PM Monday.
Hanover College Head Coach Molly Jones
HCAC Tournament MVP- Katie Gahimer, Hanover College