PSU earns No. 3 seed for NCAA women’s tournament

From staff reports

Penn State earned a No. 3 seed in the Stanford regional and is hosting games at the Bryce Jordan Center this Sunday and Tuesday in the NCAA?women’s basketball tournament as pairings were released Monday night.

Penn State?(22-7) ranked No. 14 in the AP?Top 25, is in the tournament for a fourth straight year under coach Coquese Washington. Its first-round game Sunday, March 23 tips at 12:30 on ESPN2 vs. No. 14 seed Wichita State. No. 6 seed Dayton (23-7) meets No. 11 Florida (19-12)? in the other first-round game, scheduled to tip Sunday at 3.

The two Sunday winners will play at 7 on Tuesday, March 25, for a spot in the Sweet 16 at Stanford.

Penn State and Wichita State have never met. Penn State is 1-1 all-time against current Missouri Valley Conference teams. As for the other teams in the University Park bracket, Penn State is 2-1 all-time against Dayton and 1-1 versus Florida.

Penn State is making its 25th NCAA Tournament appearance and fourth straight, its most since seven-straight berths from 1999-05. Penn State is one of only 10 teams to earn 25 or more NCAA Tournament berths.

The Bryce Jordan Center is one of 16 venues hosting first and second-round games.

Penn State hasn’t played since a 99-82 loss in the Big Ten tournament to Ohio State on March 6 after earning the league’s regular-season title.

Senior guard Maggie Lucas won her second-straight Big Ten Player of the Year honor from the media after averaging 21.4 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.9 steals per game.

Fellow senior Dara Taylor took home Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year honors and All-Big Ten second team accolades as she led the league in steals (2.9) and is fifth in assists (5.0). She also ranks third on the team in scoring at an 11.7 per game clip.

Senior guard/forward Ariel Edwards garnered All-Big Ten first team accolades after accounting for 15.4 points per game and 6.0 rebounds, while senior post player Talia East was named All-Big Ten honorable mention with a 7.9 scoring average and 7.3 rebounding mark.

Team capsules

No. 3 Penn State

University Park, 22-7.

Nickname: Lady Lions. Coach: Coquese Washington.

Conference: Big Ten. Bid: At-Large.

Region: Stanford. Seed: No. 3.

Tournament Record: 30-24, 24 years. Last Appearance: 2013.

Scoring: (75.9); Maggie Lucas 21.4; Ariel Edwards 15.4; Dara Taylor 11.7.

Rebounds: (44.4); Talia East 7.3; Ariel Edwards 6.0.

Assists/Turnovers: Team (13.1/16.3) Dara Taylor 5.0/3.2; Ariel Edwards 2.3/1.9.

3-pointers: Team (.317); Maggie Lucas 66; Dara Taylor 16.

Last Ten: 7-3.

The Skinny: Penn State won its third-straight Big Ten regular-season title and relies heavily on its four-member senior class, led by Lucas, who is among the top players in the country, and Dara Taylor, who was the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year.

No. 14 Wichita State

Wichita, Kan., 26-6.

Nickname: Shockers. Coach: Jody Adams.

Conference: Missouri Valley. Bid: Automatic.

Region: Stanford. Seed: No. 14.

Tournament Record: 0-1, 1 year, Last Appearance: 2013.

Scoring: (71.6); Alex Harden 17.1; Jamillah Bonner 13.1; Michelle Price 12.3; Michaela Dapprich 8.7.

Rebounds: (36.8); Michelle Price 7.3; Alex Harden 5.8; Kelsey Jacobs 4.4.

Assists/Turnovers: Team (13.2 /13.4) Alex Harden 5.0/2.5.

3-pointers: Team (.313); Alie Decker 48; Jamillah Bonner 31.

Last Ten: 6-4.

The Skinny: Wichita State captured its second-consecutive Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, winning all three games in the tournament by an average of 19 points. The Shockers will be heading to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in school history after making it for the first time in 2012-13.

No. 6 Dayton

Dayton, Ohio. 23-7.

Nickname: Flyers. Coach: Jim Jabir.

Conference: Atlantic 10. Bid: At-Large.

Region: Stanford. Seed: No. 6.

Tournament Record: 2-4, 4 years. Last Appearance: 2013.

Scoring: (82.0); Andrea Hoover 17.2; Ally Malott 14.5; Amber Deane 13.2; Cassie Sant 10.9.

Rebounds: (44.0); Ally Malott 8.2; Cassie Sant 5.7; Andrea Hoover 5.4.

Assists/Turnovers: Team (17.0/17.1); Andrea Hoover 3.6/2.1; Amber Deane 3.6/3.0.

3-pointers: Team (.344); Andrea Hoover 66; Ally Malott 32.

Last Ten: 8-2.

The Skinny: The Flyers won their second consecutive A-10 regular season championship. … Andrea Hoover was named the 2014 A-10 Player of the Year – the first-ever UD womens basketball player to earn the honor. … Five Flyers have played for their respective national teams.

No. 11 Florida

Gainesville, 19-12.

Nickname: Gators. Coach: Amanda Butler.

Conference: SEC. Bid: At-Large.

Region: Stanford. Seed: No. 11.

Tournament Record: 11-13, 13 years. Last Appearance: 2012.

Scoring: (75.1); Jaterra Bonds 15.6; Kayla Lewis 11.9; Cassie Peoples 10.2.

Rebounds: (36.3); Kayla Lewis 8.6; Ronni Williams 5.5.

Assists/Turnovers: Team (13.9/16.7) Jaterra Bonds 4.3/3.8; Cassie Peoples 3.6/2.8.

3-pointers: Team (.329); Lily Svete 50; Carlie Needles 43.

Last Ten: 4-6.

The Skinny: Finished fifth in the SEC, highest since tied for fourth in 2008-09. Played all but two games with 8 players and all average at least 17.3 minutes and 5.8 points per game. All eight have scored double figures at least four times and all eight have started at least once this year.