The Chattanooga women’s basketball team had known for the last week that it was headed to the NCAA Tournament, but on Monday night, the Lady Mocs learned what awaits them in the Big Dance.
The crowd gathered at Big River Grille erupted when ESPN’s Selection Show revealed UTC’s opening-round matchup, which pits the 11th-seeded Lady Mocs against sixth-seeded Nebraska in College Station, Texas. Tipoff is set for Saturday (6:30 p.m.) at Reed Arena on the campus of Texas A&M.
Chattanooga, which received its second-highest seeding in school history, is 1-10 in 10 NCAA appearances, and the school’s only tournament win came back in 2004 on its home court—a 74-69 victory over Rutgers.
UTC (29-3) punched its tournament ticket last Monday when it received the Southern Conference’s automatic bid, claiming its 14th SoCon Tournament title in school history. The Lady Mocs posted a 19-1 mark in league play, notching their 18th SoCon regular season crown, and Chattanooga finished the regular season at 26-3 overall, which included wins over Tennessee and Alabama.
The Lady Mocs have only faced Nebraska (23-8, 12-4 B1G) once in school history, defeating the Huskers 79-64 on Nov. 21, 1979. Nebraska lost to Purdue in the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament, but are still ranked No. 24 in the latest Associated Press Top-25 Poll.