Women’s Basketball NCAA Preview: Rounds 1-2

Women’s Basketball NCAA Preview: Rounds 1-2

CHICAGO – Opening round action in the NCAA Division III women's basketball tournament commences this Friday, as the University of Chicago travels north to St. Paul, Minn. University of St. Thomas will serve as the host of the four-team regional this weekend.

 

Games Schedule

  • Friday, March 3 – UChicago vs. Wartburg, 5:30 PM
  • Friday, March 3 – St. Thomas vs. Wisconsin-Superior, 8:00 PM
  • Saturday, March 4 – Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 7:00 PM

 

UChicago Maroons

  • Season record: 18-7 overall / 11-3 UAA (University Athletic Association)
  • NCAA appearances: 6    (1995, 2008, 2010-12, 2017)
  • NCAA postseason record: 7-5
  • Best NCAA result: Quarterfinals in 2011
  • Top Players: Britta Nordstrom (F, Sr.) – 13 points, 6.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.2 steals, .523 field goals / Olariche Obi (F, So.) – 9.2 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, .526 field goals / Taylor Lake (Fr, Fr.) – 9.7 points, 4.8 rebounds / Miranda Burt (G, Fr.) – 8.7 points, 1.7 steals
  • National stat rankings: 74.4 points per game (26th) / 61.6 points allowed (192nd) / .426 field-goal percentage (40th) / 12.8 steals (22nd) / 22.6 turnovers forced (26th)
  • Notes: Britta Nordstrom earned her fourth All-UAA honor of her career on Monday. In the school's career rankings, she is second in field-goal percentage (.550), seventh in field goals made (410), sixth in free throws made (241) and eighth in steals (135) … UChicago's swarming defense has created havoc for opposing teams all season. The Maroons have forced at least 25 turnovers on nine different occasions. They have won all those games by an average of 25.6 points … The combination of a stifling defense and high-scoring offense (74.4 PPG) has resulted in a number of blowout victories for the Maroons. They have beaten nine opponents this season by at least 20 points this season, with five wins by at least 30 points … UChicago played one of the hardest schedules in the country with a .640 strength-of-schedule. The team also played 11 games against regionally-ranked foes.

 

#8 Wartburg College Knights

  • Season record: 25-2 overall / 15-1 IIAC (Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
  • NCAA appearances: 11  (1989-94, 1999, 2001-02, 2016-17)
  • NCAA postseason record: 13-10
  • Best NCAA result: Semifinals in 2016
  • Top players: Katie Sommer (G, Jr.) – 14.3 points, 5.7 rebounds, 5.7 assists, 1.7 steals / Miranda Murphy (F, Jr.) – 13.2 points, 5.2 rebounds, .544 field goals / Kristie Sommer (F, Jr.) – 11.7 points, 81 three-pointers
  • National stat rankings: 77.8 points per game (12th) / 57.3 points allowed (88th) / .452 field-goal percentage (12th) / .378 three-point percentage (2nd) / .770 free-throw percentage (7th) / 8.5 three-pointers per game (8th) / 433 free throws (8th) / 17.5 assists (10th) / +20.5 scoring margin (11th)
  • Notes: In last year's NCAA tournament, Wartburg defeated St. Thomas on the road in the Round of 16 by a 70-66 margin … Katie Sommer is seventh in NCAA Division III with 81 three-pointers made, 10th with 5.7 assists per game and 20th with 132 free throws made … Wartburg won the IIAC Tournament final 81-68 over Luther College … The Knights have tallied 12 victories by at least 20 points this season, with six-straight games by double digits … Wartburg's 25 wins are the second-most in school history (26 wins in 2000-01).

 

#2 University of St. Thomas Tommies

  • Season record: 27-0 overall / 18-0 MIAC (Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
  • NCAA appearances: 24  (1984, 1987-2001, 2008, 2010, 2012-17)
  • NCAA postseason record: 45-23
  • Best NCAA result: National champion in 1991
  • Top players: Kaitlin Langer (C, Sr.) – 19.7 points, 8.2 rebounds, 1.3 blocks, .552 field goals / Gabby Zehrer (G, Sr.) – 11.6 points, 2.7 rebounds / Lauren Fischer (G/F, Jr.) – 9.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 51 three-pointers
  • National stat rankings: 73.9 points per game (32nd) / 52.4 points allowed (30th) / .454 field-goal percentage (11th) / .775 free-throw percentage (5th) / +21.5 scoring margin (7th) / .349 three-point percentage (20th) / +9.1 rebounding margin (21st)
  • Notes: Kaitlin Langer leads the nation in free throws made (168) and ranks 34th in field-goal percentage (.552). She was named the MIAC Player of the Year and a First Team All-American in 2015-16 … St. Thomas has taken third place in the NCAA tournament four times (1996, 1996, 2000, 2012) and won the national title in 1991 … The Tommies have a cumulative record of 163-18 (.900 winning percentage) over the past six seasons. They have won the MIAC tournament in each of those years.

 

University of Wisconsin-Superior Yellowjackets

  • Season record: 23-4 overall / 16-0 UMAC (Upper Midwest Athletic Conference)
  • NCAA appearances: 2    (2016-17)
  • NCAA postseason record: 0-1
  • Top players: Hailey Kontny (G, Jr.) – 14.5 points, 5.7 rebounds / Hannah Norlin (F, So.) – 12.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, .519 field goal / Eva Reinertsen (F, Fr.) – 9.5 points, 3.3 rebounds, 45 three-pointers
  • National stat rankings: 75.4 points per game (20th) / 58.0 points allowed (104th) / .440 field-goal percentage (17th) / +10.6 rebounding margin (13th) / +17.4 scoring margin (24th) / 22.0 turnovers forced (34th) / 11.9 steals (35th)
  • Notes: In two seasons in the UMAC, Wisconsin-Superior has won all 36 of its games against conference opponents. The Yellowjackets are currently riding a 14-game winning streak, during which they've won their games by an average of 20.4 points … On Wednesday, Hailey Kontny was named UMAC Player of the Year for the second-straight season and forward Eva Reinertsen earned UMAC Freshman of the Year honors … Kontny has led the team in scoring in 12 games this season while Reinertsen and Hannah Norlin have seven games with the most points.