Huskies To Host First Round WNIT Game Vs. Cal Poly
March 12, 2012
SEATTLE - The Huskies still have some basketball left in them.
Following a solid second-round run through the Pac-12 Tournament, the Huskies found out late Monday night they were an at-large selection for the Women's Basketball Invitational Tournament, where they will face Cal Poly on Wednesday at Alaska Airlines Arena. UPDATE: Game is now scheduled for 7 p.m. PST.
Washington finished 17-13 in the regular season, winning four of its last six games under first-year coach Kevin McGuff. The Husky coach was eager to play more basketball to give his program's senior players an "opportunity to keep competing."
They'll have a difficult task on hand with the Mustangs (17-14, 12-4), who won the Big West Conference regular season title, therefore earning an automatic bid into at least the WNIT. The Mustangs were upset in the Big West Conference Tournament by Long Beach State in the semifinals. Cal Poly boasts a two-time Big West Player of the Year in senior Kristina Santiago, who is sixth in scoring at the Division I level with a 23.3 points per game average.
When McGuff was hired by Washington after nine highly successful years at Xavier, he emphasized his goal for the Huskies to experience postseason basketball.
"One of our goals was to be in postseason play," McGuff said. "So I'm just really excited for our players that they will have that chance."
The Huskies have played four Big West opponents this season, going 3-1 in against UC Davis, Cal State Northridge, Santa Barbara and Long Beach State.
Should the Huskies beat the Mustangs, they would play the winner of Pac-12 rival Utah and Utah State in a Round 2 game to be hosted sometime during March 17-19.
The WNIT news came on top of the Pac-12 announcement that the end of season conference tournament would be held at Key Arena in Seattle starting next season. In a conference call with reporters, Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott cited the passionate fan base of the WNBA's Seattle Storm, in addition to the well-established community for women's basketball in the Pacific Northwest.
Ticket information for the Huskies game against Cal Poly is available by calling the UW ticket office at (206) 543-2200.