The Lady Lions lost in the North Central Region Championship game a year ago in a close hard fought game; they would use that as motivation all off season. The team set a goal to win the North Central Region and advance to the NCCAA DII Women’s National Tournament, and for the first time since 1990 Trinity Bible College did just that.
Thursday, March 8, 2012, the Lady Lions would open up their National Tournament play with the host and three seed, Ohio Christian University. With both teams being running and pressing teams it was predicted to be an exciting game. Turns out, both Ohio and Trinity would come out struggling to convert offensively. Six minutes into the game, the score was tied at four. Trinity’s Treva Nutter hits a three with seconds left in the first half to take the lead 29-28 going into the break. With the slow start and the lid on the rim ailing both teams in the first half, the game would go to whoever could find their rhythm first. The second half Lions would find Ohio Christian’s Shelby Roe heating up from the three point line in the second half shooting five of nine from the arc too much to answer. Trinity women fall short in the second half losing 78-61. The Lions were lead by junior guard Treva Nutter who contributed 23 points, 3 steals and 6 rebounds, shooting 10-11 from the free throw line. Freshman Hannah Daly shot 10-12 free throws to chip in a double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds. Shooting guard, Shianne Montgomery would follow up with 11 points and 9 rebounds. Ohio Christian was lead by three players in double figures: Roe and Butte with 16 a piece and Black with 10 points respectively.
Day two, the Lions would face Valley Forge Christian College Patriots. In an earlier season match up, the Lions were able to win the AG Tournament with a ten point win over Valley Forge. However, this match up would once again find the lady Lions plagued by poor shooting percentages. They played a strong first half and went into the break down seven. Valley Forge’s shooting guard Megan Godwin dominated the second half shooting an unconscious seven of nine from the three point line. The Lions would lose game two 60-46. The Lions had three starters in double figures for scoring: Montgomery with 12, Nutter with 10 and Droste with 12. The Patriots were lead by Morgan Godwin leaving her mark with 25 points.
The consolation game for seventh and eighth place National seeding would prove to be a great match up and for the Lions, their best performance of the tournament. With Grace University also coming into the game 0-2, neither team wanted to let a chance for a win slip away. Grace came out ready to play and jumped to a 17-3 lead early with the Lions fighting to keep it find some kind of rhythm. They would trail at half 31-18. With 20 minutes left to play, the Lions would refocus and battle back in the second half closing the gap with Montgomery hitting some key threes and Treva turning on what the announcers dubbed, “Nutter-time.” The Lions really poured it on in the second half outscoring the Royals 34-22. There was several lead changes in the second half and the Lions would find themselves trailing by one with the ball on the far end and a time out. With 9.7 seconds on the clock the Lions had time for one last play for the win. The shot fell short for the Lions to end the game and tournament losing by one to the Royals 52-53. Treva Nutter would lead the Lions to the close finish with 18 points, 7 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 4 assists. The Royals were lead by Erika Stubbendeck with 14 points and Brittany Wilson and Katie Loewen adding in 11 points apiece.