CHICAGO - Regular season champion Louisville leads the field of 12 Conference USA women's basketball teams that will descend on Milwaukee, Wis. this week for the 2001 C-USA Women's Basketball Tournament, presented by Kohl's and Nike.
Tourney action gets underway on Friday, March 2 at 1:00 p.m. CST when No. 9 seed Southern Miss (12-15) faces No. 8 seed DePaul (15-12). USM will be seeking revenge for a regular season loss to the Blue Demons in Chicago. The winner of that game will face No. 1 seed Louisville (19-8) on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. CST.
Friday's second opening-round game features No. 5 seed Cincinnati (19-8) against No. 12 seed South Florida (4-23) at 3:00 p.m. CST. Cincinnati is eyeing its fourth consecutive postseason bid, while South Florida looks for a second straight first round upset in the conference tournament. The winner of this matchup will face No. 4 seed UAB, an NCAA Sweet Sixteen participant a year ago, at 3:00 p.m. CST on Saturday.
Friday's evening session begins with No. 6 seed Memphis (16-11), winners of six straight, squaring off against No. 11 seed Saint Louis (14-13), which needs a win to secure a second straight winning season. The winner will advance to face No. 3 seed Houston (18-11), the conference's most-improved team in the regular season (+11 wins from last season), at 6:00 p.m. CST on Saturday.
Host Marquette (12-15) will take to the court as the No. 7 seed at 8:00 p.m. CST on Friday to battle No. 10 seed Charlotte (10-17). The Golden Eagles enter the tournament having won three in a row, while Charlotte hopes to repeat its tournament success of last season, when it advanced to the semifinals. The winner of the Marquette-Charlotte matchup will take on two-time defending tournament champion Tulane (19-9) in Saturday's nightcap at 8:00 p.m. CST.
The semifinals on Sunday, March 4 will be televised on The C-USA Network, which will syndicate the games throughout the league's markets. The championship game on Monday, March 5 will be televised by ESPN 2 on a same night tape delay basis, beginning at 10:30 p.m. CST.
All games will take place at U.S. Cellular Arena in downtown Milwaukee. For ticket information, please contact your local Conference USA school's ticket office.
2001 CONFERENCE USA TOURNAMENT Presented by Kohl's and Nike (U.S. Cellular Arena, Milwaukee, Wis.) Friday, March 2 (8) DePaul vs. (9) Southern Miss 1:00p (5) Cincinnati vs. (12) South Florida 3:00p (6) Memphis vs. (11) Saint Louis 6:00p (7) Marquette vs. (10) Charlotte 8:00p Saturday, March 3 DPU/USM winner vs. (1) Louisville 1:00p CIN/USF winner vs. (4) UAB 3:00p MEM/SLU winner vs. (3) Houston 6:00p MAR/CHA winner vs. (2) Tulane 8:00p Sunday, March 4 Semifinal No. 1 (C-USA TV Network) 2:00p Semifinal No. 2 (C-USA TV Network) 5:00p Monday, March 5 Championship (ESPN 2) 7:00p All Times Central