Wednesday, March 14, 2007

It's Postseason Play for the Lady Wildcats!!!!

Wildcat Women Make First-Ever Postseason Appearance With WNIT Bid

DAVIDSON, N.C. -- The 2006-07 season for the Davidson women’s basketball team will go down as one of the best ever in program history, and the Wildcats found out Monday night they will get a chance to continue their historic season. Davidson earned its first-ever trip to postseason play when it earned an at-large bid to the Women's National Invitational Tournament as announced on Monday night.

For the first time, each of the nation’s 31 conferences will be represented in the WNIT. The tournament expanded to 48 teams this year to accommodate an automatic berth for each of the conferences.

The Wildcats will take their school-best record of 23-8 to the University of Alabama at Birmingham on Thursday, Mar. 15 for a first-round matchup against the Blazers. Game times will be announced Tuesday, March 13, by the WNIT. For ticket information, please contact the UAB Athletic Ticket Office at (205) 975-8221.

Davidson and UAB have faced each other just once, which occured during head coach Annette Watts first season on Dec. 16, 2001. The Wildcats had four players score in double figures in the game, but the Blazers prevailed by the score of 97-78.

Davidson is coming off a 1-1 showing at the Southern Conference Tournament after falling to eventual tournament-winner Chattanooga in the semifinals on Friday, Mar. 2.

During one of the most successful seasons ever, Davidson earned the program’s first-ever wins over NCAA Tourney participant Gonzaga, Eastern Washington and Cornell, swept its three Big South contests (NCAA Tourney participant UNC Asheville, High Point, who received a WNIT automatic bid, and Winthrop), and secured five two-game season-series sweeps of its Southern Conference foes.

This year has also been the season of streaks for the Wildcats. They had a school-best 10-game overall winning streak to go along with a school-best nine-game win streak away from Belk Arena. The ’Cats also continued on a 40-game assist streak throughout the year before seeing it snapped, and they currently have a streak of 189 straight games with at least one three-pointer.

The 2006-07 Wildcat squad as a team set numerous new single-season records on the court. They were the second highest scoring team in the SoCon (70.4) on their way to a school-best 2,183 total points for the year, breaking the previous mark of 2,139 set by the 1998-99 team. Helping Davidson reach its points mark is the Wildcats' school-record 805 field goals on a school-best 1,848 attempts.

The 'Cats have also taken advantage of their trips to the charity stripe by netting a new school-record 74.3 percent of its free shots, besting the 73.6 percent set by the 2001-02 team.

Davidson was a very unselfish team this year, dishing out a single-season record 485 assists as a team, topping the 467 set by 2001-02 squad.

Defensively, for the second straight year the Wildcats set a new single-season mark for steals with 378, pocketing 42 more than the 336 from the 2005-06 campaign. Nationally, the Wildcats are seventh with an average of 12.2 steals per game as of March 11. Davidson even matched the single-game high of 26 steals, set back on Jan. 29, 1994, when they swiped that many against Emory on Dec. 2.

UAB advanced to the semifinals in the Conference USA Tournament, before falling to eventual tournament champion East Carolina, 85-81. The Blazers, who were the number two seed in the C-USA tournament, finished the season 18-12 overall and 12-4 in league play. They were just 6-8 against non-conference foes and sported a 9-6 home record. After starting the year 0-6, UAB used a five-game and two four-game winning streaks the remainder of the season to close it out at 18-6.

C-USA Player of the Year Carmen Guzman leads the Blazers as she is one of two players pouring in over 15 points a game. The senior ranks second in the conference with a 21.5 average, which is also good for 10th in the nation. Guzman was recently named one of the 52 finalists for the Kodak/WBCA All-American Women's Basketball Team. She was also honored with a nod on the C-USA all-tournament team after scoring 54 points in UAB's two tournament games.

With a win over UAB, the Wildcats would travel to Auburn (19-12), who earned a first-round bye, on Sunday, Mar. 18 at 2 p.m. It would mark the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

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