The NJCAA Women’s Basketball National Championship trophy is headed back to the campus of Northwest Florida State College. The Raiders claimed the national title on Monday night against Trinity Valley Community College in a gutsy 66-63 victory at the Rip Griffin Center. The 2023 Championship marks the Raiders thirteenth national tournament appearance and second national title in program history. The Raiders won their first national tournament championship title in 2021.
Down by 10 in the first quarter, the Raiders mounted a furious comeback with stifling defense and stellar execution on offense. Sophomore Sakima Walker scored 23 points to lead the Raiders with Destiney McPhaul, Zayla Tinner, and Celia Riviere close behind. The Raiders' rebounds (42) and assists (14) also aided in their win over the Lady Cardinals.
Walker was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2023 NJCAA DI Women's Basketball Championship. Walker recorded 80 points and 42 rebounds throughout the national tournament.
President Devin Stephenson remarked after the win, “I couldn’t be prouder of the Lady Raiders and coach Bart Walker. It is an outstanding achievement and a testament to our commitment to excellence at Northwest Florida State College. The best truly is our standard.”
Congratulations, Lady Raiders!