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Friday, March 3, 2000
Houston, Texas
Volume 65, Issue 108

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The second season

UH begins C-USA Tournament play today; Marquette the favorite

By Jesse Lauritz
Daily Cougar Staff

March Madness has arrived and it all begins with Tournament Week.

The Lady Cougars are participating in the Conference USA Tournament held in Louisville starting today and going through Monday.


Max Lacayo/The Daily Cougar


Salome Hector and the rest of the Tulane Green Wave will try to keep recent success going into the postseason. Tulane has a first round bye and will face the winner of the UH-Cincinnati game.

C-USA has two nationally ranked teams, Tulane and Marquette, and some of the most exciting players in women's basketball, including Grace Daley, Lisa Oldenburg, Deanna Jackson and Abbie Willenborg.

The Lady Cougars are seeded No. 10 in a field of 12. They will face off against the Lady Bearcats of Cincinnati at 7 p.m. on Friday and will face Tulane if they survive the first round.

Here is a rundown of the first round and each team's chances of taking the crown.

Alabama-Birmingham vs. Saint Louis

UAB is led by Deanna Jackson with 17.8 points, 12 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game. Combined with Mia Thrash and Michelle Smith, UAB can provide a triple threat.

Saint Louis has three players averaging double digits in scoring and is led by Mandy Lueking. The matchup should be close but UAB has a slight edge in its bench.

Prediction: UAB

Houston vs. Cincinnati

The Lady Cougars have been outscored by their opponent by almost nine and a half points this season. They play a tenacious defense but never seem to jump out of the gate with a lead.

Madinah Slaise has been solid for Cincinnati head coach Laurie Pirtle, and is behind only Grace Daley in scoring at 20.7 points per game. The Lady Cougars will be looking to avenge an earlier 66-64 loss to the Lady Bearcats at Hofheinz Pavilion.

Prediction: Houston

DePaul vs. South Florida

Lenae Williams and the Lady Blue Demons look to take advantage of being the No. 5 seed when taking on No. 12 South Florida.

Monica Echeverria will have to step up on the offensive as well as the defensive end of the floor if the Lady Bulls want to win.

Prediction: DePaul

Louisville vs. North Carolina-Charlotte

Louisville's Jill Morton has had a superb season for the Lady Cardinals. The guard led the team in scoring and assists while also putting up good numbers in steals and rebounds.

UNCC needs freshman standout Alicia Abernathy to put up the same seven points and five rebounds per game that she's averaged in only 20 minutes of play.

Prediction: Louisville

Second round

UAB vs. Marquette

Prediction: Marquette

DePaul vs. Southern Mississippi

Prediction: Southern Miss

Louisville vs. Memphis

Prediction: Memphis

Houston vs. Tulane

Prediction: Tulane

Tulane, Marquette, Memphis and Southern Miss should all make it to the semis even with their first round byes.

Championship Game

Marquette vs. Tulane

Prediction: Marquette

The combination of Willenborg and Oldenburg will be enough to beat Daley in the final. However, if Janell Burse and Sarah Goree have excellent games, then the Lady Green Wave could pull out the win. It will be a close game regardless, but Marquette should come away with the victory.
 

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