Tuesday, July 16, 2024
HomesportMarch Madness: Which non-No. 1 seeds can reach the Women's Final Four?

March Madness: Which non-No. 1 seeds can reach the Women’s Final Four?

Behind Aneesah Morrow, Angel Reese, Flau'jae Johnson and Hailey Van Lith, the LSU Tigers will be a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

At the back of Aneesah Morrow, Angel Reese, Flau’jae Johnson and Hailey Van Lith, the LSU Tigers can be a Incorrect. 3 seed within the NCAA event. (Picture via Eakin Howard/Getty Pictures)

The 4 Incorrect. 1 seeds within the 2024 NCAA women’s basketball tournament will have to be arrange with the very best roads to achieve the Ultimate 4 in Cleveland nearest life. But it surely’s disagree pledge and plethora of groups underneath them at the seed traces have in a similar way robust possibilities.

The gang is led via UCLA, one of the well-rounded squads. The Bruins are joined via UConn, an injured squad that would nonetheless be unhealthy in March, and LSU, the reigning champions with revel in who’re getting sizzling on the proper era.

UCLA (Albany 2 | Incorrect. 2 seed)

25-6 (13-5) | NET: 6 | vs. NET govern 25: 8-5 | NET SOS: 1

The Bruins have essentially the most wins towards groups ranked within the NET govern 25 of any of the govern methods this 12 months, however in addition they have essentially the most losses. Head professor Cori Near packed UCLA’s non-conference agenda, and the Pac-12 used to be the hardest convention within the family this season. That’s worthy skilled in March.

UCLA stumbled when sophomore 6-foot-7 middle Lauren Betts overlooked era within the convention agenda. The Bruins offense runs thru her and so they obtain balanced scoring from their starters and key reserves. They’ve wiped clean up the glass all season (59.5% rebound price ranks first) and restrict giveover.

They’re within the hardest regional with Incorrect. 1 Iowa, Incorrect. 3 LSU and Incorrect. 4 Kansas Atmosphere. UCLA may just finally end up the latter status in that workforce as a result of their taste of play games.

UConn (Portland 3 | Incorrect. 3 seed)

28-5 (18-0 Weighty East) | NET: 2 | vs. NET govern 25: 3-5 | NET SOS: 31

There are two tactics to take a look at UConn’s season.

The glass-half-empty model is that UConn struggled towards the family’s perfect groups, going 3-5 towards groups ranked govern 25 in NET and 4-6 towards groups ranked within the Related Press Govern 25. The Huskies’ undefeated Weighty East identify doesn’t stock the similar weight as one would in alternative meetings, and it slightly challenged them.

The glass-half-full model is UConn ruled in a different way. It received 25 of its video games via no less than 20 issues, and just one via unmarried digits. The 5 video games the Huskies misplaced have been to identify contenders UCLA, NC Atmosphere, Texas, Notre Dame and South Carolina.

The 14-year Ultimate 4 streak snapped latter 12 months, lifting a weight off the backs of avid gamers who’ve dealt with injury heartache for a lot of the moment 4 years. Paige Bueckers returned from an ACL trauma to contend for Participant of the Moment honors, and along ahead Aaliyah Edwards, she carried UConn. It’s difficult to depend the Huskies out in March. It used to be most effective 3 years in the past Bueckers put them on her back to the national title game in Minneapolis.

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How far can Paige Bueckers carry UConn in the NCAA tournament? (M. Anthony Nesmith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)How far can Paige Bueckers carry UConn in the NCAA tournament? (M. Anthony Nesmith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

How a ways can Paige Bueckers lift UConn within the NCAA event? (M. Anthony Nesmith/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Pictures)

LSU (Albany 2 | Incorrect. 3 seed)

28-5 (13-3 SEC) | 8 | 1-3 | 52

The reigning nationwide champions performed tight with South Carolina two times this 12 months, giving reason why plenty to select them as a staff that would manufacture noise within the bracket. The Tigers are enjoying a few of their perfect basketball over the moment life.

They rank 2nd offensively (86.7 ppg) and advanced defensively since back-to-back losses to South Carolina and Mississippi Atmosphere in overdue January. It’s the facet of the ball head professor Kim Mulkey harped on unwell the stretch.

They continue to be some of the perfect rebounding groups within the nation (58.4% ranks 3rd) with Angel Reese, the 2023 Ultimate 4 Maximum Remarkable Participant, and Aneesah Morrow, a switch from DePaul. Each and every have been named first-team All-SEC.

The drawback is intensity and fitness. The Tigers already had a snip bench with out Sa’Myah Smith (ACL) and Kateri Poole (brushed aside). Reese wore a strolling boot forward of the SEC championship recreation towards South Carolina generation coping with an ankle trauma. She’s reached 4 fouls in 9 video games, together with two times towards the Gamecocks. She fouled out overdue of their first assembly.

Freshman standout Mikaylah Williams (ankle) used to be questionable for the SEC event, however performed mins within the ultimate as a result of the melee at the end of the game. Terminating-Tear Poa’s situation is unsure upcoming she was hospitalized after a head injury within the semifinal recreation.

Stanford (Portland 4 | Incorrect. 2 seed)

28-5 (15-3 Pac-12) | 4 | 7-4 | 15

When Stanford is at its perfect, it’s a very simple Ultimate 4 contender. But it surely hasn’t all the time proven itself at its perfect. The Cardinal have been at the verge of a Incorrect. 1 seed and fell off it with a loss within the Pac-12 identify recreation blended with a Weighty 12 championship identify via Texas.

Cameron Verge of collapse (17.8 ppg) and Kiki Iriafen (18.6 ppg) are a perilous one-two punch within the paint and will simply perfect groups with much less measurement. Verge of collapse is still a blockading device, averaging 3.5 in step with recreation, perfect in Section I. And so they’re 2nd in rebound price in the back of UCLA.

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