Web Exclusive: RCTC WBB wins the NJCAA D-III National Championship, 73-53

The Yellowjackets were led by Tournament MVP Olivia Christianson’s 31 points.

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(ABC 6 News) — RCTC Women’s Basketball won its second-ever NJCAA Division III National Championship in a 73-53 drubbing of Minnesota West on Saturday, March 18.

The Yellowjackets, having the unique advantage of hosting the entire tournament, played off the home crowd and the familiarity of conference rival Minnesota West, their opponent in the game.

Both sides kept the contest close early, shots not always flushing down despite great looks and passing by each unit.

The Yellowjackets began pulling away with solid defense in the third quarter while Lyle native Olivia Christianson continued to light up the scoreboard.

All but one of RCTC’s starting five scored in double-digits, Ravyn Miles added 16 points, Jada James scored 12 and Altura’s own Myia Ruzek had 10.

“There was so much going on at once,” Christianson said postgame. “And I think it was just a big sigh of relief because we finally did it. We’ve been working so hard to do this and today’s the day. It finally happened, everything we worked for.”

“I’m just excited,” James added. “I’m kind of speechless right now, I’ve never really been in this position, so just being able to take home the national title at home is just exciting.”

“The team you just saw plays for each other,” an emotional head coach Jason Bonde said. “They didn’t waiver from anything we wanted to do. They knew what we needed to do, our pressure got to them got some turnovers and it started creating baskets for us. Just proud of this group, very proud of this group.”

The Yellowjackets conclude their season with both the national title and a 27-1 record.