Score: Evangel 87, Graceland 71 | Box Score
Records: Evangel (19-10, 14-10); Graceland (13-19, 7-19)
Location: Lamoni, Iowa | Closson Center
LAMONI, Iowa – The Evangel women's basketball team continued its late-season surge Saturday winning its seventh consecutive, 87-71, at Graceland.
The Crusaders clinched a first-round bye with the win and hold a tie-breaker over Clarke to earn the No. 4 seed. Evangel will host Clarke on Wednesday evening in the quarterfinals of the Heart Postseason Tournament.
After seeing an early lead cut to 10 at halftime, Evangel had to fight off Graceland as the Yellowjackets pulled within three, 60-63 to start the fourth quarter. Evangel responded with a 10-2 run to build its lead back to 15 with 4:47 left when Emma Lander made a pair of free throws.
The Crusaders would finish 9 of 13 at the line in the second half and out-rebound Graceland 44-20 to hold off the home team's second-half rally.
Lander was one of five Crusaders to finish in double figures finishing with 14 points, while Lexie Vaught added a game-high 23 points. Vaught posted her ninth double-double grabbing 12 boards while she also recorded six steals.
Vaught moved into fourth place for most steals in a single-season at Evangel as her 110 total steals make her just the third Crusader in program history to record 100 steals in a season.
Brianna Vogts added 17 points off the bench going 7 of 10 from the field and pulled in five boards. Bayley Harman added 12 points while Mackenzie Farmer chipped in with 14 points and four assists in the win.
Sari Rodriguez led Graceland with 20 points and three assists.
Evangel will host Clarke on Wednesday night at 5:30 p.m. in the Quarterfinals of the Heart Postseason Tournament.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EUAthletics or go to www.EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Go Evangel Front Row App at EvangelAthletics.com/FrontRow available on Google Play and in the App Store.