The Tennessee Lady Vols were chosen as a number three seed Monday night in the Women’s NCAA Basketball Tournament and will host Liberty on Friday at 2:30 pm at Thompson-Boling Arena. The game is on ESPN2.
The Lady Vols are part of the Lexington Region and will host two rounds in Knoxville. A victory over Liberty will put them into a contest against the Oregon State-Western Kentucky winner. Louisville is the number one seed in the region which includes Missouri.
UConn, Notre Dame and Mississippi State were selected as the other number one seeds.
The SEC was well represented in the tourney with South Carolina, Georgia and Texas A&M also selected. South Carolina is the defending NCAA Women’s champ.
The Lady Vols have the luxury of being at home for the first two rounds against opponents they should handle. Key factors will be limiting turnovers and leadership performances from Jamie Nared (17 points per game) and Mercedes Russell (15 double-doubles this year.) A match-up against number one Louisville in Lexington is a strong possibility.
The Lady Vols need to show discipline handling the ball. They also need to get the ball into the post to Russell when outside shooting is having an off night. One poor night shooting from the outside can get you an early tournament exit. Senior leadership and poise will play a key roll.
In the other brackets, UConn, the number 1 overall seed, may run into a showdown with South Carolina and 3 time Player of the Year in the SEC, A’ja Wilson in the Albany Region. Georgia is also in the region.
Notre Dame is the number one seed in the Spokane Region which includes Texas A&M and Chennedy Carter, who averages 21 points per game as a freshman.
Mississippi State leads the Kansas City Region. They feature Teaira McCowan and a defense that forces 19 turnovers per game.