Clarksville, Ark.-The University of the Ozarks women's basketball team will enter the American Southwest Conference Championship Tournament as the No. 4 seed from the East Division and will face Concordia University Texas Friday at 12:00 p.m. in Pineville, Louisiana.
It is the second straight season the Lady Eagles (13-12, 9-11 ASC) have qualified for the tournament under Head Coach Carl Ramsey. The Lady Eagles have posted back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in ten years. The winner of Friday’s game will play Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Louisiana College (22-3, 18-2) won the East Division title and earned the right to host the eight-team tournament February 24-26. The championship game will be held Sunday at 2:00 p.m., with the winner receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA III National Tournament.
Ozarks needed to win against Texas-Tyler (12-13, 8-12 ASC) on Saturday, but also received help from Texas-Dallas, who beat LeTourneau University (13-12, 9-11 ASC). Ozarks finishes tied for fourth-place in the East Division with LeTourneau, but owned the tie-breaker having defeated Texas-Tyler twice.
“We’ve had to beat Texas-Tyler back-to-back seasons to get in,” said Ramsey. “This year was different because we had to win at their place and something else had to happen. We came out ready to play and played good defense.”
“One of our goals this year was to make the playoffs,” said Ramsey. “It is good to be in post-season again. It helps our confidence. All five of our starters played in last year’s tournament so it is not new to them. I think we will come in with a little more confidence and be more relaxed. To be in the top four of the division year in and year out will always be a goal and will always be tough. This gives us something to build on.”
Concordia won the West Division title for the first time in program history. Under Head Coach Rusty Rainbolt, the Tornados are in the playoffs for the first time since the 2004-2005 season. Rainbolt’s team defeated Ozarks 74-59 in Clarksville January 7.
“Coach Rainbolt does a great job at Concordia,” said Ramsey. “He has a deep and athletic ballclub. They put pressure on you and we need to make sure we can handle it. Shamika Singleton is one of the top players in the conference and we have to contain her. They have several players who contribute in the scoring column. We will have to shoot the ball well against their tough zone defense.”
The Tornados have a balanced offensive attack led by Singleton, who averages 12.0 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. Only one other player averages in double figures. As a as team, Concordia shoots 40.9 percent from the field and 64.3 percent from the free throw line. It averages 68 points per game while allowing 57.
Ozarks counters with a veteran team that has won five of its last seven games. Ozarks was among the top-5 teams in the ASC in three-point shooting (30%), blocked shots (3.6) and assists (14.6). Senior center Sabrina Goddard leads the team in scoring (16.1), rebounding (7.6) and blocked shots (2.0). Senior guard April Young is averaging 14.0 points per game and has made 60 three-pointers. Senior guard Lacey Phillips is the league-leader in assists (5.7) and scores 10.0 points per game. Starting senior point guard Alison Villines has made 13 three-pointers and collected 50 steals while senior forward Ashley Teague is averaging 5.2 points per game.
The entire eight-team, single elimination event will be available for fans through free live video streaming with audio provided by LC and the ASC. The Conference will have a “Tournament Central” page on ASCsports.org/HOOPS where the link to live video can be accessed as well as live local radio feeds, box scores, game recaps, post-game interviews, photos and the updated bracket. Clarksville’s KXIO 1069. FM will cover the game.
2012 ASC Women’s Basketball Championship Tournament Schedule
Hosted by Louisiana College/Pineville, LA/H.O. West Fieldhouse-
Friday, February 24
Game 1: [W1] Concordia Texas (20-4) vs. [E4] Ozarks (13-12), 12:00 p.m.
Game 2: [E2] Texas-Dallas (19-6) vs. [W3] Howard Payne (20-5), 2:30 p.m.
Game 3: [W2] McMurry (18-7) vs. [E3] Mississippi College (16-9), 5 p.m.
Game 4: [E1] Louisiana College (22-3) vs. [W4] Hardin-Simmons (13-12), 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, February 25
Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 2 p.m.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, February 26
Game 7: Semifinal winners, 2 p.m.
- Admission prices for each day will be $6 for adults and $3 for students/seniors. An all-tournament pass will be available for $12. No complimentary pass lists will be accepted.
- Souvenir tournament T-shirts (short sleeved) will be available for $15. Official conference merchandise will also be for sale, including caps ($15), beanies ($10) and ear warmers ($10). Only cash and checks will be accepted.
- H.O. West Fieldhouse address: 1140 College Dr., Pineville, LA, 71360.
- Returning All-Tournament Team selections from 2011 are most valuable player Brittany Roberson and Jasmin Thomas of Howard Payne, and Roslyn Wilmer of Louisiana College.
- This is the 14th season the ASC has sponsored a women’s basketball championship tournament.
- Teams from the West Division hold an 12-1 advantage in ASC titles won.
- The host team has won six overall titles, including the last two.
- The hosting rights of the tourney rotate from East to West each year.
- Talk about, check scores of ASC basketball tournaments on Twitter: #ASChoops