March 17, 2018

Senior Watch: 2018 NCAA Tournament Is Set

14 March 2018, 05:54 | Ken Black

UConn Earns Top Seed in NCAA Women's Tournament, but Path to Title Is Tricky

Notre Dame women earn #1 seed for NCAA Tournament

The 2018 NCAA women's basketball tournament begins Friday, as first-round games take place on campus sites.

'We've won a national championship as a two seed, we've won it as a one seed, ' she said.

McGraw's squad advanced to the Final Four five straight seasons from 2011-15, but lost in the Lexington Regional each of the last two seasons to Stanford, in the Sweet 16 in 2016 and the Elite Eight past year.

To them, you can't spell miracle without ACL, which sidelined four Notre Dame players - senior forward Brianna Turner, senior point guards Mychal Johnson and Lili Thompson and freshman forward Mikayla Vaughn - before the turn of the New Year, and even as far back as last March for Turner.

Joining the Huskies as top seeds are Notre Dame, Louisville and Mississippi State.

The Associated Press reports the Bears, who lost just one game all season (31-1), instead get a No. 2 seed in Lexington, a region that includes top-seeded Louisville, Tennessee and Stanford.

There were five teams vying for the four No. 1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament on Monday, and when the music stopped, Baylor was left without a chair. Two of those losses came to Louisville.

The quartet of top seeds all have a legitimate chance to win the event, but don't count out defending champion SC, who is a No. 2 seed in UConn's region.

Notre Dame (29-3) gets the top seed in Spokane, but would have to play what amounts to a road game in the regional final if No. 2 seeded OR makes it that far.

The Ducks could stay out west and play in Spokane, where coach Kelly Graves spent many years as Gonzaga's coach. The Bulldogs won their first 32 games this season before losing to SC in the SEC title game.

Mississippi State received a favorable draw, but it could face a tricky matchup in the Elite 8 against No. 2 Texas, who pushed UConn for the majority of four quarters in a four-point loss January 15. The Cardinals open up against Boise State. He guided the Waves from 1996 through '99, going 42-44 in his first head-coaching job, then was head coach at Saint Louis before 15 years at the helm of UW, where he was a three-time Pac-12 Coach of the Year.

Mississippi State is a No. 1 seed for the first time in school history. "Hopefully, some of those UConn fans who got so excited about what we were able to do a year ago will stay for the second part of Saturday's doubleheader and root us on".

While this is the Huskies' 30th consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament, Nicholls State, Northern Colorado, Mercer and Seattle will be making their first appearances.

Buffalo, Creighton, Minnesota and Oklahoma were the final teams to get bids to the tournament.

Oklahoma got in with a 16-14 record - the fewest wins for an at-large team since 2005.

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