Women’s D-III Basketball Tournament Begins Mar. 7

SL44_44F1143-1024x723The Spalding women’s basketball team will travel to Rhodes College in Memphis, Tn., for the 2014 NCAA Division III First and Second Round. SU will face off against site host No. 19 Rhodes in their first-round game on Friday, March 7; game times have not been determined. LIVE STREAMING will be available.

Spalding University (16-10, 14-4 SLIAC) won their first St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Title this season, earning the league’s automatic bid. The Golden Eagles are making their first NCAA Division III Tournament appearance since becoming full NCAA members last season, after serving three previous season as provisional members, following their transition from NAIA. The team is led by Jessica Guy and Kerstin Hayes, both SLIAC First Team All-Conference members. Guy averaged a double-double, scoring 15 points and grabbing 10 rebounds per game, while Hayes averaged 14.7 points, 2.5 assists and 1.8 steals per game.

Rhodes College, champions of the Southern Athletic Association finished the season with a 24-3 (13-1 SAA) regular season record. Rhodes earned an automatic bid after winning their second straight SAA tournament championship with a 79-60 win over Centre College. The Lynx are led by senior guard Lauren Avant. Avant, the SAA Women’s Player of the Year, averaged 25.0 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.
If the Golden Eagles advance to the second-round game they will face the winner of No. 21 University of Texas -Tyler and Maryville College (Tn.).

Texas-Tyler (25-3, 20-2 ASC) received an automatic bid after defeating Mary Hardin-Baylor 68-56 in the America Southwest Conference (ASC) Championship game, earing the Patriots their first NCAA Tournament appearance. UT-Tyler is led by junior Brittany King. King, a 6 foot power forward, averaged a double-double this season, tallying 17.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per game.

Maryville College (Tn.) earned an at-large bid after falling to No. 16 Ferrum College 64-50 in the USA South (USAS) Championship, earning the Lady Scots their 20th NCAA Tournament appearance. Maryville is led by Mackenzie Puckett, the USA South Player of the Year. Puckett led the Lady Scots to a 22-6 (13-3 USAS) record, averaging 15.1 points and 6.7 rebounds per game.