This myth has been corrected. Be taught below
The first round of the females’s NCAA tournament is behind us, and the realm has been narrowed to 32 teams. Mechelle Voepel and Charlie Creme of espnW weigh in on the most easy and worst of Saturday and search ahead to what lets search recordsdata from when the 2nd round begins Sunday.
Voepel: A third consecutive early-round loss within the NCAA tournament is shocking sufficient. A player (Evina Westbrook) telling the media after the sport that there must be changes with the Lady Vols — alongside with the employees — is a transparent signal that they’ve necessary chemistry points and internal strife, which became once evident in a pair of of their losses this season, alongside with at house to Vanderbilt.
Athletic director Phillip Fulmer extended coach Holly Warlick’s contract via 2021-22 in August. Shopping out females’s basketball instructing contracts has infrequently been carried out, however Tennessee is at possibility of be in that stammer.
Does Warlick must be changed? Her employees? Each? If nothing occurs, will avid gamers transfer? And the method lengthy can Tennessee proceed to lose ground to diversified SEC programs that contain turn out to be powers, such as Mississippi Sing and South Carolina?
Fulmer and the Tennessee athletic division must opt soon whether or no longer the program can proceed because it is. Tabling right here’s no longer going to compose it better.
Evina Westbrook obtained candid with us in publish-game, acknowledged changes must be made to the program off the court docket, particularly within the #LadyVols instructing employees. pic.twitter.com/iJjVXlWI4z
— Jordan Crammer (@JordanCrammer) March 23, 2019
Creme: The Tennessee program wants a tradition swap. Sophomore Evina Westbrook alluded to such after the loss to UCLA on Saturday. That revamped tradition would perhaps perhaps well attain within the accept as true with of entirely fresh personnel or an altered manner by the employees already in feature.
My instincts allege the faded doesn’t attain without some swap to the latter. It is at possibility of be time for ticket spanking fresh management atop the Lady Vols’ operation, and some avid gamers must search within the mirror and imagine their commitment to the program.
A No. eleven seed and first-round exit are no longer acceptable at any of the pause-20 programs — especially no longer at a school with eight national titles that became once so essential to the enhance of the sport.
Voepel: How sturdy No. 5 seed Gonzaga regarded from the tip in beating Runt Rock within the Albany Regional. Fervent on the Bulldogs’ misery points, there contain been questions about how neatly they’d play. They answered these by outscoring the Trojans 21-2 within the first quarter.
Creme: Michigan Sing’s ability to outscore Central Michigan became once no longer how I saw that game going. For the Spartans to utilize, I believed they’d wish physical play and rugged defense. Neither came about, and Michigan Sing tranquil obtained a wildly intelligent 88-87 game.
While the Spartans controlled the offensive boards for key stretches, the final rebounding profit became once simplest 33-30. Michigan Sing never tried to push and bang Reyna Frost, the Chippewas’ 6-foot monumental name publish player. The truth is, the Spartans never even doubled her, and Frost assign up 34 aspects. Coach Suzy Merchant elected to push tempo principal extra, a game that Central Michigan likes to play, however it absolutely labored, and the Spartans gracious to the 2nd round for the ninth time in 15 years.
Voepel: Going with some nostalgia right here: Seeing Missouri Sing coach Kellie Harper and assistant Jackie Stiles taking a search so intense on the Lady Bears’ bench as they upset No. 6 seed DePaul and remembering how essential both contain been to their teams as avid gamers, with Harper winning three NCAA titles with Tennessee (1996-ninety eight) and Stiles getting to the Final Four with mid-predominant Missouri Sing in 2001. On the present time, they helped the Lady Bears to their first NCAA tournament victory since Stiles & Co. obtained their Elite Eight game against Washington in 2001.
Creme: Boise Sing lost, however the self perception with which the Broncos performed within the 2nd half of against Oregon Sing became once piquant. They contain been the easier group for many of the sport, and senior guard Marta Hermida regarded to comprehend it when she winked on the rim after she made two free throws to present Boise Sing a leisurely Four-level lead.
Voepel: Michigan Sing lost six of its 10 video games since Feb. 7, Four of these against teams that did no longer compose the NCAA tournament. The No. 9-seeded Spartans contain been going against a No. Eight Central Michigan group that made the Candy Sixteen final year and would cherish nothing better than to beat a Gigantic Ten group. The Spartans had to battle for this one. Their 88-87 utilize on Shay Colley’s layup with seven seconds left became once sizable. It skill they contain to face defending national champion Notre Dame subsequent, however the Spartans are elated to contain that probability.
Creme: Beating DePaul became once progressively within the playing cards for Missouri Sing. Completely controlling the sport against the Blue Demons from the center of the 2nd quarter became once one thing else entirely. The Lady Bears contain been precise all season — as two wins over Drake and terminate losses to Gonzaga and Missouri indicated — however this roughly efficiency exceeded expectations.
Missouri Sing has averaged precise bigger than Four.5 three-pointers per game this season. In its previous two video games — the Missouri Valley championship game against Drake and Saturday’s first-round utilize over DePaul — the Lady Bears contain made a blended 20. That roughly shooting affords them a raffle against one more if truth be told precise shooting group in Iowa Sing within the 2nd round.
Voepel: No. 7 seed Missouri obtained some sizable wins on the road throughout SEC play, alongside with at Tennessee (early in January when that became once tranquil a sizable utilize), at Mississippi Sing (the most easy visiting group to utilize in Starkville the previous two years) and at Arkansas (the week prior to the Razorbacks went on their urge to the SEC tournament final). Beating No. 2 seed Iowa on the Hawkeyes’ house court docket is a probability. Staying out of snide peril and limiting turnovers, both of which contain been points, are keys for the Tigers.
Creme: Exact two years eliminated from a national championship, South Carolina is a extra neatly-identified program than Florida Sing and the bigger seed. But the fifth-seeded Seminoles’ getting to the Candy Sixteen with a utilize Sunday wouldn’t shock me. The Seminoles contain been the extra fixed group most of this season and contain the extra valid streak-to player in Kiah Gillespie. Sure, Florida Sing struggled to beat Bucknell within the first round, and the fourth-seeded Gamecocks cruised against Belmont, however South Carolina’s Bianca Cuevas-Moore did no longer play and Mikiah Herbert Harrigan became once held out within the first half of. When asked why the avid gamers contain been it sounds as if disciplined, Gamecocks coach Break of day Staley acknowledged, “clearly one thing came about however I am precise no longer going to divulge that recordsdata.” Would possibly perhaps well perhaps that proceed to be a distraction for South Carolina?
Voepel: Right here is a skill to search at this: Gustafson’s place of living as the leading scorer and one of many most easy rebounders within the nation is a given. No person has stopped her. She’ll bring collectively her double-double, and opponents are lucky if it be simplest 28 and 13.
Cunningham, as precise as she has been, has been held to single-digit scoring video games six cases, though all of these contain been earlier on this season, either prior to ahead Cierra Porter rejoined the group or soon later on.
Cunningham wants to hit soar photos, and he or she has to manual obvious of snide peril. If she will be able to accomplish both, she has the probability to contain a higher affect — in section due to, dazzling or no longer, what Gustafson does is so fixed that it be almost taken without a consideration.
Creme: Cunningham handles the ball extra and performs extra areas on defense, so the pure solution would be that she would contain the most have an effect on. Alternatively, Gustafson’s publish play and scoring are such an overwhelming section of every Iowa game.
If Gustafson is catching it low sufficient on the block, she is nearly unstoppable due to she so infrequently misses, shooting almost 70 percent from the realm. Iowa can merely withhold going to that until Missouri finds a creative manner to leisurely her down. Cierra Porter would perhaps perhaps well no longer be sufficient by herself. Cunningham has to play neatly for the Tigers to utilize, however Missouri has in most cases struggled this season in video games by which she has been gigantic.
A March 23 myth on ESPN.com misstated the reason two starters on the South Carolina females’s basketball group did no longer play within the group’s first-round NCAA tournament game. The avid gamers contain been held out attributable to a coach’s resolution.