No. 2 Seed Stanford To Meet Cleveland State In NCAA Tournament Opener

March 17, 2008

NCAA Tournament Central

STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford (30-3, 16-2 Pac-10), ranked fourth in both the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches polls, earned a No. 2 seed in the 2008 NCAA Tournament and will face Cleveland State (19-13, 10-8 Horizon League) in the first round.

The Cardinal and the 15th-seeded Vikings will do battle at 5:30 p.m. PT Saturday, March 22, at Maples Pavilion. The contest, which will be televised on ESPN2, will kick off the evening session, with the winner scheduled to meet the victor of Saturday night's game between No. 7 UTEP and No. 10 Western Kentucky.

Stanford received the Pac-10's automatic berth into the 64-team draw by virtue of its Pac-10 Tournament title run last weekend.

The Cardinal and Vikings have met once before, as Stanford captured a 95-69 season-opening victory at the UNLV/7-Up Classic in Las Vegas on Nov. 28, 1986.

Saturday's NCAA Tournament schedule at Maples Pavilion is as follows (all times Pacific):

  • 11 a.m.: (6) George Washington vs. (11) Auburn
  • 30 minutes following: (3) California vs. (14) San Diego
  • 5:30 p.m.: (2) Stanford vs. (15) Cleveland State
  • 30 minutes following: (7) UTEP vs. (10) Western Kentucky

    Stanford is making its 25th postseason appearance this March, and 22nd in the NCAA Tournament. The Cardinal made three straight visits to the AIAW Tournament from 1978-80, and first appeared in the NCAA Tournament in 1981-82. This year also marks the Cardinal's 21st consecutive bid to the Big Dance.

    The Cardinal boasts a 44-21 overall record, a 19-5 record at Maples Pavilion, two national titles (1990, '92), and six Final Four appearances (1990, '91, '92, '95, '96, '97) in its postseason portfolio. Last season, Stanford defeated Idaho State, 96-58, in the opening round, before falling, 68-61, to Florida State in the second round at Maples Pavilion.

    Stanford guaranteed its seventh 30-win season in program history last Monday night, defeating California, 56-35, in the Pac-10 Tournament final. The title, Stanford's fifth in the seven-year history of the tournament, followed a 16-2 mark in conference play, good for the program's eighth consecutive Pac-10 regular-season crown. The Cardinal, currently riding a season-best 18-game winning streak, dominated the Pac-10 regular-season awards, as senior guard Candice Wiggins was named Pac-10 Player of the Year for a record-breaking third time, freshman forward Kayla Pedersen took home Freshman of the Year honors, and Tara VanDerveer earned her ninth Coach of the Year award.

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