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ETSU gears up for first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance
Friday, March 21, 2008
DES MOINES, IOWA (Mar. 21, 2008) - The ETSU women's basketball team enters unfamiliar ground this weekend when they take on Big 12 foe Oklahoma State in the first round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday evening inside Wells Fargo Arena at 7:12 p.m. CST.
The Lady Bucs - who have won a program-tying 21 wins and enter tomorrow's match-up on an eight-game win streak - will make their first ever tip in an NCAA Tournament live on ESPN2. Fans in the Tri-Cities area can also listen to all the action on WKPT-AM 1590 and its translator 97.7 or 97.9 FM in
Since winning the Atlantic Sun Tournament and cutting down the nets in
"They are a good team and can run the ball," mentioned senior post Jenny Norman (
With this being ETSU's first trip to the Big Dance, the team is soaking everything in and enjoying the experience. The run was a little bumpy during the season, but all the hard work by the players, coaches and staff has made this a rewarding effort.
"We are really excited to be here, this team has worked extremely hard to get to this point," mentioned head coach Karen Kemp, who was named Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year earlier this month. "We are not content to be here and want to go out and be competitive tomorrow night."
Standing 3-7 after its first 10 games, ETSU quickly turned the season around by closing out the last 22 games with an 18-4 mark. During the run, the Lady Bucs knocked off
Even though the players put in the effort on the court, the ETSU coaching staff has done a tremendous job keeping the team focused on reaching its goal of winning the conference crown and making the NCAA Tournament.
"Coach Kemp has done a really great job in preparing us during this run," added
"For the past week Coach Kemp has kept us focused and geared us up for
One of the difficult tasks that lie ahead for ETSU on Saturday night is containing 5-5 sophomore guard Andrea Riley. The
"There's not a word to describe how good she is," added Kemp. "She is very competitive and when the game is on the line she steps her game up to a new level. She gives her team what they need both offensively and defensively."
On Friday, the Lady Bucs faced the media for a 30-minute session and then finally took the court inside Wells Fargo Arena for a 50-minute practice.
The winner of ETSU/Oklahoma State moves into the second round and faces either
For more information on Lady Buccaneer basketball, visit www.ETSUBucs.com.
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