BYU women’s basketball team to play Louisville in NCAA tourney

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The Cougars react to seeing their name on the screen during ESPN's women's NCAA tournament selection show. (J Mason Nordfelt)
The Cougars react to seeing their name on the screen during ESPN’s women’s NCAA Tournament selection show. (J Mason Nordfelt)

The BYU women’s basketball team will play Louisville in an opening-round NCAA Tournament game on Saturday, March 21. The Cougars are a 14-seed and will face off with the Cardinals in Tampa Bay, Florida.

“It’s huge to be able to play against such great competition on such a huge stage,” said BYU senior Morgan Bailey. “We’re all ready to go.”

The Cougars earned the WCC’s automatic bid by winning the conference tournament in Las Vegas last week, which made for a much more comfortable selection show viewing party this time around.

“That’s easier on your heart, knowing that you’re going,” BYU coach Jeff Judkins said.

ESPN’s analysts pointed out that the Cougars are a tough matchup for No. 10 Louisville, despite being an overwhelming underdog.

“We know how good we are, but I don’t know if we know that national-level people know how good we can be,” Bailey said. “It’s really cool to get that recognition, and it shows that all the hard work we’ve put in this season is paying off.”

The Cougars made a run to the Sweet Sixteen last season as a 12-seed, and Judkins is optimistic about his team’s chances of pulling off another upset this weekend.

“We’re not afraid,” he said. “We know if we come out and play and do what we need to do, we can stay with anybody. It’ll be a great challenge for us.”

The game will be televised on ESPN2 at 2:00 p.m. (MDT).

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