#14/16 Women's Basketball Set for Meeting with Top-ranked Thomas More
CRESTVIEW HILLS, Ky. -- Mount Union's nationally ranked women's basketball team is set to take on Thomas More (Ky.) in an NCAA Tournament second-round game at Thomas More's Connor Convocation Center. The contest will begin on Saturday at 7 p.m.
The Purple Raiders won their first-round game over Wisconsin-Whitewater, 69-55, while the host Saints handled Piedmont (Pa.), 53-44.
Mount Union Purple Raiders (26-3)
Ranked: #14 (ESPN/USA Today), #16 (D3Hoops.com)
The Purple Raiders advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round with a 69-55 win over Wisconsin-Whitewater as Rosa LaMattina and Kori Wiedt scored 17 and 13 points, respectively. They stretched their winning streak to 12 games -- and have won 16 of 17.
Wiedt, an All-OAC First Team selection and OAC Tournament MVP, enters NCAAs as Mount Union's leading scorer. She is averaging 12.4 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.1 three-pointers per game.
Rosa LaMattina is the Purple Raiders' only other scorer in double-figures with averages of 11.8 points, 3.5 assists and 2.0 steals. An OAC Tournament Team selection, LaMattina was also named to the All-OAC Second Team.
Amanda Rose, who earned an All-OAC Honorable Mention, is averaging 9.1 points and 6.1 rebounds.
Katie Crider, with 9.3 points per game, and Brittany Kilgore, with averages of 8.8 points and 4.98 rebounds, have also been key contributors for the Purple Raiders.
The team faced one fellow NCAA Tournament team during the 2010-11 regular season, and won, when it defeated Juniata, 79-68.
The NCAA appearance is Mount Union's second consecutive qualification and fifth all-time. Last year, the Purple Raiders advanced to the Sweet 16 with victories over Washington and Jefferson (Pa.) and Messiah (Pa.) before falling to eventual national champ Washington (Mo.).
The Raiders have compiled a 14-4 record in NCAA Tournament play, including a championship game appearance in 1996 when it lost to Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
Mount Union has advanced to the Final Four twice in its history; the other time happened in 1998 when the Raiders lost to eventual runner-up Southern Maine.
Thomas More Saints (29-0)
Ranked: #1 (ESPN/USA Today), #1 (D3Hoops.com)
The Saints advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round with a 53-44 win over Piedmont (Ga.). Chelsea Tolliver led the way with 16 points. Thomas More has not lost since March 6, 2010.
Nicole Dickman has been Thomas More's top performer this season, averaging 13.1 points and 7.4 rebounds. She and top scorer Chelsea Tolliver were honored on the All-PAC First Team. Tolliver also averages 13.3 points.
Allison Long, who made the All-PAC Second Team, is contributing 2.8 assists per game for the Saints along with a .506 field goal percentage and .408 three-point percentage.
An All-PAC Honorable Mention, Katie Kees has solid numbers inside the paint with 7.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game.
Moriah Corey grabs 5.4 rebounds per contest.
The Saints were 4-0 against fellow NCAA Tournament teams in the regular season, including three wins over Saint Vincent. Their other win came against Christopher Newport (Va.).
The NCAA appearance is Thomas More's fifth straight and ninth all-time. Last year, the Saints defeated Fontbonne (Mo.) in the opening round before suffering their most recent loss to date -- a defeat at the hands of Washington (Mo.).
The Saints have compiled an 9-8 record in NCAA Tournament play, including a trip to the Sweet 16 in 2009 where they lost to Hope (Mich.).