March 23, 2014
How Sweet It Is
Seton Hall advanced to the WNIT Sweet 16 following a thrilling 75-74 win over intra-state foe Princeton on Sunday evening. After five BIG EAST teams earned WNIT invites, the Pirates remain the only one standing and will face the winner of Rutgers-Harvard, who will square off on Monday evening. Ka-Deidre Simmons scored a team-high 23 points and add five assists, while Bra'Shey Ali reached double-digit rebounds for the 16th time with a game-high 12 boards. Neither team led by more than two baskets as the lead changed hands 26 times and was knotted an additional 10 times. Sidney Cook provided the go-ahead points on an and-one with 10 seconds remaining, while Tabatha Richardson-Smith sealed the win with a steal with two seconds on the clock. WNIT Third Round games are slated for March 26-28.
A Fond Farewell
Following setbacks in the WNIT, the BIG EAST saw the final games played by five 1,000-point scorers. Marquette's Katherine Plouffe will graduate with 1,551 points, most among current league players, while Creighton will say goodbye to a pair of quadruple-digit scores: Sarah Nelson (1,472) and Carli Tritz (1,041), while McKenzie Fujan fell just shy of the milestone (963). Butler's Daress McClung (1,054) and Villanova's Devon Kane (1,020) round out the senior class 1,000-point scorers who have played their final minutes. DePaul's Jasmine Penny (1,382) and Eugeneia McPherson (1,083) of St. John's will look to continue to add to their final totals in the NCAA Tournament.
For the 22nd consecutive year, multiple BIG EAST teams have advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round as seventh-seeded DePaul and eighth-seeded St. John's are two of 32 squads still alive. The Blue Demons advanced to the Second Round for the ninth time in program history, showing a 2-6 mark in previous Round of 32 contests, while the Red Storm advanced for the sixth time in program history and are 1-4 in previous Second Round games. DePaul will face Duke and St. John's will play Tennessee on Monday night with both Second Round games aired on ESPN2 and the WatchESPN app.
DePaul and Duke will meet for the fourth time overall and third time in the NCAA Tournament in Monday's NCAA Second Round game in Durham, N.C., at Duke's Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Blue Demons are 1-2 against the Blue Devils, winning the inaugural meeting in November 1986 before dropping a pair of NCAA Tournament contests in 1997 and most recently in the 2011 Regional Semifinals. Duke, the No. 2 seed, is 28-6 overall. DePaul enters the game also 28-6 and has won eight straight, one shy of its season high.
St. John's-Tennessee Notes
Monday's matchup between St. John's and Tennessee will be only the second all-time meeting between the two programs and the first since 1982. The Lady Vols posted a 69-56 win over St. John's on Dec. 3, 1982. Tennessee is the No. 1 seed and enters Monday's game, which will be played on their home court at Thompson-Boling Arena, with a 28-5 record having won eight straight. The Red Storm are 23-10 following Saturday's last-second win over USC and have won four of their last five.
Sunday, March 23
George Washington 76, Villanova 66*
South Dakota State 62, Creighton 51*
Seton Hall 75, Princeton 74*
Monday, March 24
DePaul vs. Duke, 6:30 p.m.#^
St. John's vs. Tennessee, 9 p.m.#^
^Televised on ESPN2