Stanford Earns No. 2 Seed, Will Face UC Santa Barbara In NCAA Tournament First Round At San Diego
March 16, 2009
STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford (29-4, 17-1 Pac-10), ranked second in both the Associated Press and the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Polls, earned a No. 2 seed Monday in the 2009 NCAA Tournament and will travel to San Diego to meet the 15th-seeded UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (22-9, 15-1 Big West) in the first round.
The Cardinal and Gauchos will meet Saturday night, March 21, at 7:30 p.m. at San Diego State's Cox Arena. The game will be televised on ESPN2 and is set to tip off approximately 30 minutes following the conclusion of the evening's first contest between No. 7 DePaul and No. 10 San Diego State.
Stanford earned the Pac-10's automatic berth into the 64-team draw after capturing the conference tournament this past Sunday with an 89-64 victory over USC.
This year's NCAA Tournament marks the 22nd consecutive appearance for Stanford, and 23rd overall. Including three appearances in the AIAW Tournament from 1978-80, the Cardinal has now qualified for postseason play 26 times.
Last year, Stanford swept through its bracket and all the way to the national championship game in Tampa Bay, marking its seventh Final Four appearance and first since 1997. The Cardinal, which won national titles in 1990 and '92, registered victories over Cleveland State, UTEP, Pittsburgh, Maryland and Connecticut before falling to Tennessee in the title game.
In 2008-09, Stanford has been led by the play of Pac-10 Player of the Year Jayne Appel, who is averaging 14.8 points and 8.9 rebounds per game while shooting 61.0 percent from the field. Also contributing have been second-team All-Pac-10 picks Jillian Harmon (9.8 ppg, 4.8 rpg) and Jeanette Pohlen (11.0 ppg, 2.33 three-pointers per game) as well as Pac-10 Tournament Most Outstanding Player and third-team All-Pac-10 pick Kayla Pedersen (11.3 ppg, 7.9 rpg).
The 2009 Final Four is set to be held April 5 and 7 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Mo.