Monday, March 17, 2014

Marist Women Play At Host Iowa in NCAA Tourney

The reward for a ninth straight trip to the NCAA tournament for the Marist College women's basketball team?

How about having to play on the home court of first-round opponent Iowa?

Not exactly the most desirable of circumstances, but the NCAA women's events uses home facilities in early round games.

The Marist women will play the Hawkeyes Sunday at 8 p.m eastern time at the Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Iowa's campus in Iowa City.

Marist has twice before played on the home court of an NCAA Tournament foe, and to the expected results.

It lost to Duke, 71-66 (although the Red Foxes led most of the way), at the Blue Devils' Cameron Indoor Stadium in the second round of the 2011 tournament.

And, Marist lost to LSU, 68-49, in the second round of the 2008 event played on the Tigers' home court in Baton Rouge, La.

Now, Marist gets another chance to beat a home team in the national championship tournament.

Iowa is 26-8 thus far and rated 19th nationally in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll. It is one of five teams from the Big Ten Conference to be rated in the Top 25.

Marist, with a 27-6 overall mark, received four votes in the most-recent poll, the 30th-most of teams nationally.

Statistically, there are similarities between the teams.

Both take good care of the ball. Marist's 1.31 assist-to-turnover ratio is 11th-best nationally, while Iowa's 1.28 is 16th; Iowa records 18.2 assists per game, 9th nationally, to 16.4 for Marist, 23rd.

Marist shoots 46.9 percent from the field, fourth-best nationally, while Iowa is at 46.1, 13th. Iowa scores 78.6 points per game, 23rd best, to Marist's 72.6 (71st).

But, Marist's points-per-game allowed average of 59.3 is 32nd best nationally, while Iowa's 69.1 is 226th.

Iowa has the one player ranked in the top 20 in any statistical category of the two teams. The Hawkeyes' Samantha Logic, a 5-foot-9 junior point guard, is third nationally in assists, averaging 7.5 per contest.

Like Marist, Iowa also has five players who average double figures.

Logic is also the team's leading rebounder at 6.6 per contest, while scoring 13.4 points per contest.

Other starters are expected to be 6-4 junior center Bethany Doolittle (14.2 points, 4.6 rebounds), 5-8 junior guard Melissa Dixon (13.4, 2.2), 6-0 freshman guard Ally Disterhoft (13.2, 6.4) and 5-11 senior guard Theairra Taylor (12.1, 4.6).

Marist is a No. 11 seed in a 16-team bracket, while Iowa is a No. 6.

The 11th-seed position is the third best the Red Foxes have received in the past decade. In 2008 Marist was a No. 7 seed and in 2011 it was a No. 10 seed.

No comments: