Fresh off an NCAA postseason appearance, the WKU women’s basketball team is looking forward to another tournament. The school announced Thursday that Diddle Arena will serve as a host site for the opening round of the women’s preseason NIT tournament in November.
“Not only being in the tournament, but having the chance to be one of the few schools to host is a sign of the national respect that our program has garnered in the women’s basketball world,” said WKU head coach Michelle Clark-Heard. “I am so excited for our team and our fan base to have the chance to have this event in E.A. Diddle Arena.”
The Lady Toppers have a 6-3 record all time in the preseason NIT tournament, which began in its current form in 1994.
The WNIT preseason tournament begins November 14th.
WKU's hopes of upsetting No. 2 seed Baylor in the NCAA Tournament opener fell short Saturday evening.
Facing the Bears on their home court in Waco, Texas, WKU managed to stay close, trailing by just six at the half. But Baylor, led by Odyssey Sims and Nina Davis, pulled away late in the second half for an 87-74 win. Davis had 32 points in the game; Sims scored 31.
With the loss, WKU's ten-game winning streak and season came to an end, following the team's Sun Belt Conference title.
WKU was led in scoring by Chastity Gooch, who poured in 23. Kendall Noble contributed 21 in the loss and Bianca McGee added 18.
The WKU Lady Toppers first appearance in the NCAA basketball tournament since 2007-08 is made even more remarkable when you considered that it has happened without one of the team’s scoring leaders.
Junior guard Alexis Govan has been sidelined since December 21st with a stress fracture of the leg and likely won’t play until next season. Despite her injury, Govan remains upbeat. She’s been cheering on teammates from the bench and says she's looking forward to the team’s trip to Waco.
“It’s going to be fun. Texas is a great place for Western to play and we’ve had some success there, so everybody knows that we have to be up and be positive. It’s a big game and a big opportunity,” said Govan.
The trip to Texas will be a trip home for Govan, a San Antonio native. WKU head coach Michelle Clark-Heard says the team misses her presence, and her 16 points per game, but the good news is Govan’s injury won’t likely require surgery.
The WKU women’s basketball team has made a habit of coming back in games this season.
A big rally last week against Arkansas State in the Sun Belt Conference championship propelled them to an NCAA tournament appearance on Saturday. The Lady Toppers will travel to Waco, Texas to face No. 2 seed Baylor. WKU head coach Michelle Clark-Heard says her team can’t afford to fall behind against the Lady Bears.
“They can put up numbers fast,” said Clark-Heard. “If you can’t withstand that first four minutes, it’s going to be crucial for us. It becomes very crucial that we continue to have the confidence that we had. It’s going to be a different atmosphere, but the floor is going to be the same length and the rim is going to be the same height.”
WKU signee Ivy Brown has been named Kentucky's 2014 Miss Basketball, an award given annually to the state's top female high school player.
The naming marks the first winner of the award to sign with the WKU program out of high school since all-time leading scorer Crystal Kelly in 2004. Brown chose WKU over Kentucky, Middle Tennessee and Tennessee Tech.
Brown led LaRue County to a 24-7 record this season, including wins in 10 of the final 11 games of the season and an appearance in the Fifth Region Championship game. She averaged 24.4 points and 12.6 rebounds a game for the Lady hawks as a senior.
It took them overtime to do it, but the WKU Lady Hilltopper basketball team beat East Carolina University 88-77 Thursday night at Diddle Arena to advance to the second round of the 2013 Women's National Invitational Tournament.
Alexis Govan's three-pointer with 11 seconds remaining forced the overtime and the Lady Tops outscored ECU 15-4 in the extra session. Govan posted a double-double in the game with 25 points and 11 rebounds.