March 2, 2012
HARTFORD, Conn. - The No. 23 DePaul women's basketball team begins its BIG EAST Conference Championship journey on Mar. 3 at the XL Center. The Blue Demons, who earned a No. 8 seed in the conference championship, play ninth-seeded USF at 2:30 p.m. (ET). Saturday's game will be carried live in Chicago on Lakeshore Public Television which is part the BIG EAST Network with Brooke Weisbrod and Beth Mowins calling the action courtside. The game will also be carried on ESPN3 and BIGEAST.tv.
Cami Padilla will provide audio for DePaul's BlueTube, while in-game updates and notes can be followed at www.twitter.com/DePaulWBBSID.
The Blue Demons (21-9, 9-7 BIG EAST) are making their seventh BIG EAST Championship appearance. DePaul is 6-6 all-time in BIG EAST Championship games while the 2005-06 and 2010-11 teams reached the semifinals.
DePaul played in its very first conference tournament as a member of the North Star Conference in 1989 -- and has reached the league's tournament in every season since. The Blue Demons, who have been members of the North Star, Great Midwest, Conference USA and now the BIG EAST, boast a 26-19 league championship record and have won four conference tournament titles.
The Blue Demons and Bulls are meeting for the second time this season, but for the first time in the BIG EAST Championship. When the two schools were members of C USA, USF topped DePaul 82-69 in the first round of the league championship 2000. That game marked the only neutral site meeting for the two teams.
USF (17-14, 8-8 BIG EAST) won the regular season meeting in overtime in Tampa, 66-63 while DePaul leads the all-time series 12-7. Prior to the Jan. 17, 2012 game, the Blue Demons had won two straight and three of the last five meetings.
USF reached the Second Round with a 60-59 win over No. 16 Pittsburgh on Friday.
Prior to the DePaul/USF game, the BIG EAST will honor its all-conference players and major award winners. Blue Demon junior Anna Martin was one of two unanimous first-team selections while Katherine Harry was an honorable mention all-BIG EAST honoree. Brittany Hrynko was named to the all-freshman team and senior Deanna Ortiz earned the league's Sportsmanship Award.
The winner of Saturday's second round game will face top-seeded Notre Dame at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Mar. 4.