Utah women’s hoops will play in Pac-12 Tournament after COVID scare, but will do so shorthanded


Tenth-seeded Utan will face No. 7 seed Washington State on Wednesday night in Las Vegas

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Utah Utes head coach Lynne Roberts gives instructions to her players, in PAC-12 basketball action between the Utah Utes and the Stanford Cardinals at the Jon M. Huntsman Center, Friday, February 14, 2020.

After its play in the Pac-12 Tournament this week was put in doubt on Sunday, the University of Utah women’s basketball team will participate in the event, albeit shorthanded.

An athletic department spokesperson on Monday afternoon told The Salt Lake Tribune that, after contact tracing and testing in the wake of Sunday’s regular-season finale was canceled due to COVID-19, the 10th-seeded Utes will travel to Las Vegas on Tuesday ahead of a first-round contest against No. 7 seed Washington State on Wednesday at Michelob Ultra Arena (6 p.m., Pac-12 Networks).

The same spokesperson told The Tribune that Utah will play without a full roster, but declined to elaborate on how many players will be available.

Sunday morning, less than two hours before the Utes’ regular-season finale was scheduled to tip off against Colorado at the Huntsman Center, the athletic department announced the game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the Utah program.

The news release gave no indication of a program pause or shutdown, but the timing of the cancellation put Utah’s postseason in doubt.

Utes head coach Lynne Roberts said last week on a Zoom call with reporters that the Utes would travel to Las Vegas on Monday. Travel has been backed up to Tuesday in the wake of the COVID issues.

The Pac-12 previously announced that in the event one or more teams cannot play in the conference tournament, the bracket will be modified and the remaining teams reseeded. The bracket will become final on Tuesday at noon. If a team needs to drop out after Tuesday at noon, the bracket will not be modified and the opponent of the team dropping out will receive a bye into the next round of the tournament.



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Utah women’s hoops regular-season finale canceled due to COVID-19; Pac-12 Tournament participation in doubt


The Utes were scheduled to play Colorado on Sunday afternoon at the Huntsman Center.

(Rick Bowmer | AP file photo) Utah guard Niyah Becker (14) shoots a foul shot in the second half during an NCAA college basketball game against Stanford on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, in Salt Lake City. Sunday morning, less than two hours before the Utes’ regular-season finale was scheduled to tip off against Colorado at the Huntsman Center, the athletic department announced the game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the Utah program.

The University of Utah women’s basketball team’s regular season is over, and its participation in the Pac-12 Tournament later this week is now in doubt.

Sunday morning, less than two hours before the Utes’ regular-season finale was scheduled to tip off against Colorado at the Huntsman Center, the athletic department announced the game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the Utah program.

The news release gave no indication of a program pause or shutdown, but the timing of the cancellation puts Utah’s postseason in doubt. The Utes are locked into the No. 10 seed at the Pac-12 Tournament, which begins Wednesday at Michelob Ultra Arena, formerly Mandalay Bay Events Center.

After the cancelation announcement, Utah provided a short statement to The Salt Lake Tribune regarding the Pac-12 Tournament.

“A decision regarding the Pac-12 Tournament has not been determined yet. We are in the preliminary contact-tracing process and updates will be made available at a later time.”

Utah’s travel timeline to Las Vegas this week is still under consideration.

The Pac-12 previously announced that in the event one or more teams cannot play in the conference tournament, the bracket will be modified and the remaining teams reseeded. The bracket will become final on Tuesday at noon. If a team needs to drop out after Tuesday at noon, the bracket will not be modified and the opponent of the team dropping out will receive a bye into the next round of the tournament.



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Utah women’s hoops regular-season finale canceled due to COVID-19; Pac-12 Tournament participation in doubt


The Utes were scheduled to play Colorado on Sunday afternoon at the Huntsman Center.

(Rick Bowmer | AP file photo) Utah guard Niyah Becker (14) shoots a foul shot in the second half during an NCAA college basketball game against Stanford on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, in Salt Lake City. Sunday morning, less than two hours before the Utes’ regular-season finale was scheduled to tip off against Colorado at the Huntsman Center, the athletic department announced the game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the Utah program.

The University of Utah women’s basketball team’s regular season is over, and its participation in the Pac-12 Tournament later this week is now in doubt.

Sunday morning, less than two hours before the Utes’ regular-season finale was scheduled to tip off against Colorado at the Huntsman Center, the athletic department announced the game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the Utah program.

The news release gave no indication of a program pause or shutdown, but the timing of the cancellation puts Utah’s postseason in doubt. The Utes are locked into the No. 10 seed at the Pac-12 Tournament, which begins Wednesday at Michelob Ultra Arena, formerly Mandalay Bay Events Center.

After the cancelation announcement, Utah provided a short statement to The Salt Lake Tribune regarding the Pac-12 Tournament.

“A decision regarding the Pac-12 Tournament has not been determined yet. We are in the preliminary contact-tracing process and updates will be made available at a later time.”

Utah’s travel timeline to Las Vegas this week is still under consideration.

The Pac-12 previously announced that in the event one or more teams cannot play in the conference tournament, the bracket will be modified and the remaining teams reseeded. The bracket will become final on Tuesday at noon. If a team needs to drop out after Tuesday at noon, the bracket will not be modified and the opponent of the team dropping out will receive a bye into the next round of the tournament.



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Women’s Hoops Takes Down No. 3 Louisville


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State continues to have Louisville’s number.

Morgan Jones scored 26 points and pulled down 10 rebounds as Florida State stunned No. 3 Louisville 68-59 on Sunday.

Jones shot 7 of 13 from the floor and 12 of 15 from the free-throw line for the Seminoles (9-6, 8-6 Atlantic Coast Conference), recording her third double-double of the season. Florida State knocked off Louisville twice in the 2019-20 season when the Cardinals were ranked in the top 5 each time.

“I just got in attack mode all game,” Jones said. “You just have to play hard all game.”

Kourtney Weber scored 14 and added five rebounds, including four on the offensive end, as the Seminoles used a 9-0 run in the fourth period to pull in front and hold on for the victory. For Florida State, which has been forced to reschedule a large chunk of its games, a victory over a top-5 team is critical toward improving its NCAA Tournament prospects.

Dana Evans had 13 points, 10 in the second half, but shot just 5 of 21 for Louisville (20-2, 13-2). Olivia Cochran had 12 points and nine rebounds. The Cardinals were looking to secure their fourth straight ACC regular-season title, but a poor shooting game ended that opportunity.

“You love these games when you prove it with your defense,” Florida State interim head coach Brooke Wyckoff said. “You can’t rest on your laurels too long in this conference. To be able to make this win count we have to handle business moving forward.”

Valencia Myers fouled out but had nine points and seven rebounds for Florida State, which improved to 7-1 at home.

Louisville shot just 21 of 60 (35 percent) from the floor and 3 of 20 (15 percent) from 3-point range.

“We’ll take two days off and then we’ll get back at it on Wednesday,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said. “I hope it sits with them and stings for a while. It’s going to me. If it doesn’t bother our kids much then we’re not going to have a deep run in the postseason at all.”

Florida State also had its struggles from the floor, making just 19 of 60 (31.7 percent) of its shots and 3 of 13 (23.1 percent) from 3-point range. But the Seminoles made the Cardinals pay by going 27 of 38 (71.1 percent) at the free-throw line.

SIGNATURE WIN
Wyckoff played at Florida State from 1997-2001 and has been an assistant coach in Tallahassee since 2011-12. She has taken over as interim coach as Sue Semrau helps to care for her mother, who lives across the country in Seattle and is battling cancer.

This marked the Seminoles’ first win of the season over a ranked team and is a boost as they wrap up the regular season.

“It definitely builds momentum,” Jones said. “We chose to come to practice and work (after the loss to Georgia Tech on Thursday). It’s great momentum.”

POLL IMPLICATIONS
Louisville could slip a spot or so but is still likely to remain in the top 5 and in the hunt for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Women’s Tournament.

TAKEAWAYS
Louisville missed opportunities at the free-throw line, couldn’t make 3-pointers and Evans couldn’t get in gear in a rare road loss.

Jones and Weber led the way as the Seminoles used the free-throw line to deliver the knockout and pick up a third victory in the last two seasons vs. the Cardinals.

UP NEXT
Louisville plays at Notre Dame on Feb. 28.

Florida State plays at Notre Dame on Thursday.





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Women’s Basketball Travels to Marquette Friday Night


Villanova will travel to Milwaukee on Friday night to take on the Marquette Golden Eagles in a BIG EAST Conference contest. The Wildcats enter play 12-3 overall and 7-3 in conference action, while Marquette is 14-4 overall and 11-3 in league play. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m., eastern time and the game can be seen live on the Big East Digital Network.
 
Friday’s game between Villanova and Marquette will be the second meeting of the season between the two teams. On Jan. 27 in a game played at Villanova, Marquette tallied a 95-77 win. Senior forward Brianna Herlihy and sophomore forward Maddy Siegrist each scored 19 points to lead the Wildcats, who put three players in double figures on the evening. Senior forward Sarah Mortensen chipped in with 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting. Marquette was led in scoring by Selena Lott, who registered a double-double with 27 points and 11 assists. All five Golden Eagles starters scored in double figures.
 
The Villanova Wildcats put on an offensive clinic in the first half of Tuesday night’s win over Butler. In the game’s first 20 minutes, Villanova scored 67 points on 24-of-36 (.667) shooting, including a 16-of-26 (.615) effort from three-point range. The 67 points represent a school record for points in a half and the 16 threes set a school mark for triples in a half. Villanova used the first half offensive effort to lead 67-26 at intermission.  
 
The Wildcats enter play on Friday at Marquette having won five of their last six. The lone loss during the stretch was a 95-77 setback to Marquette on Jan. 27.  
 
Beginning with Friday’s trip to Milwaukee, Villanova will play three of its final four regular season games on the road, including the next three in a row. After playing at Marquette, the Wildcats play at Georgetown on Sunday, Feb. 21, and at Providence on Wednesday, Feb. 24. Villanova will conclude the 2020-21 regular season at home on Saturday, Feb. 28, when the Seton Hall Pirates visit the Finneran Pavilion.  The Wildcats are 5-1 in road games this season.
 
Over the last four games, Villanova is 50-of-115 from three-point range for 43.4 percent. After going 10-of-25 (40.0%) from three versus Marquette, the Wildcats were 14-of-33 (42.4%) from long distance at Butler, 9-of-21 versus Providence and 17-of-36 on Tuesday against Butler. The 17 threes against Butler represent a season-high performance. The Wildcats have had five games this year where they have made double digit threes. For the year, Villanova is 127-of-386 from long distance for 32.9 percent. 
 
Villanova is led in scoring and rebounding by Siegrist who is averaging 22.8 ppg. and 10.1 rpg. Two other Wildcats are averaging double figures, including Bridget Herlihy at 14.6 ppg., and Sarah Mortensen who is scoring 12.6 ppg.
 
 





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Women’s Basketball At No. 17 Kentucky Postponed


BATON ROUGE — Due to inclement weather causing continued travel issues across the southeast region of the country, the LSU at No. 17 Kentucky women’s basketball game has been postponed a second time.

The game was originally scheduled for Thursday, February 18 but was postponed to Friday, February 19 in hopes travel issues would be eased.  A makeup game is not currently scheduled.

LSU returns to action on Sunday when it hosts No. 18 Arkansas for a 5 p.m. CT tip in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center. The game will be televised on the SEC Network and Patrick Wright will have the call on the LSU Sports Radio Network.

Sunday will also be the Senior Tribute game for the Tigers six seniors – Faustine Aifuwa, Jailin Cherry, Khayla Pointer, Karli Seay, Rakell Spencer and Awa Trasi.

Ticket Information

For the 2020-21 season, seating for LSU women’s basketball games will be general admission in the PMAC. Seating has been reconfigured to support physically-distanced seating. Available seats will be spaced out in blocks of 2, 3 and 4 seats in order maximize attendance opportunities. Fans will be allowed to sit in any seat that is marked as available. Sections 112 and 115 are reserved for player guests.

Single game ticket prices are $7.00 for adults and $5.00 for youth ages 3-12. To order tickets for any of LSU’s last two women’s basketball home games, go to LSUtix.net. The next home game is scheduled for Sunday, February 21 against No. 18 Arkansas at 5 p.m. CT. It will be LSU’s Senior Tribute game.

Follow Along on Social Media

Follow updates on LSU women’s basketball on Twitter and Instagram at @LSUwbkb or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lsuwbkb.





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Women’s Basketball Travels to Towson for Weekend Series on Saturday, Sunday


TOWSON, Md. – The Drexel University women’s basketball team (9-6, 6-4 CAA) will travel to Towson, Md. to take on the Tigers (11-4, 6-2 CAA) in a weekend series Saturday, Feb. 20, and Sunday, Feb. 21. Both games will tip at 2 p.m from SECU Arena.
 
Drexel play-by-play announcer Ari Bluestein will have a free radio call. The game will also be streamed on FloHoops.
 
HISTORY
The Dragons have been a problem for the Tigers, having beaten them in 59 of the 80 total games. Drexel swept the Tigers in the 2019-20 season. In the second meeting, Washington hit a layup with 12.7 seconds left in the game to secure Drexel’s victory. Washington finished with 14 points; 12 points came in the second half. Nihill finished with eight points, six rebounds and five assists. 
 
The Dragons’ last lost to the Tigers came in the 2019 CAA Championship game.
 
LAST WEEKEND
The Dragons played top-seeded Delaware in a weekend series. On Friday, Nihill scored a career-high 32 points at Delaware. She scored 13 of the team’s 26 first-half points before erupting for 19 points in the second half. Nihill also had four assists and four rebounds.
 
In Sunday’s senior day game at the DAC, Washington had a team-high 23 points, and Nihill finished with 14. Nihill also dished out a season-high seven assists and had five rebounds and four assists.
 
LEADING SCORERS
In conference play, Nihill leads the Dragons, averaging 18.3 points per game, followed by Washington (11.2) and Leonard (9.2) through 10 contests.
 
LAST SEASON
Drexel claimed a share of the CAA regular-season crown and the No. 1 seed in the CAA Tournament with a 16-2 record a year ago and reached the 20-win plateau (23-7) for the fifth time in the past six seasons.
 
LOOKING AT THE OPPONENT
Towson has an 11-4 record in the 2020-21 season and a 6-2 mark in the CAA. The Tigers currently sit in second place in the conference with James Madison and Drexel right behind them. Last weekend, the Tigers traveled to Boston, Mass. to face Northeastern. The Tigers ended the weekend with a split which ended the Towson’s seven-game win streak. Towson averages 86.5 points per game while shooting .466 from the floor. #21 Kionna Jeter leads in scoring average with 25.0 points per game, followed by #4 Aleah Nelson (14.0) and #23 Shavonne Smith (13.5).
 



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Nepal women’s rights activists protest proposed law limiting foreign travel – JURIST – News


Hundreds of women’s rights activists and their supporters protested in Nepal’s capital Kathmandu on Friday to call for an end to violence and discrimination against women and the scrapping of a proposed law that would restrict foreign travel for many women.

The point of contention is a proposed law that would require women under 40 years of age to get permission from their family and local government to travel to the Middle East or Africa. The protesters maintain that this is a violation of fundamental human rights. According to the government, the regulation would help stop human trafficking, which is a very serious issue in Nepal. Tek Narayan Poudel, information officer at the department of immigration, said, “Women under 40 are at a higher risk of trafficking and other abuses. Therefore, the new rule is proposed for their protection. Family of the visiting girl/woman and the local ward office will give a recommendation that she can travel abroad.”

The department has sent a proposal to the ministry of home affairs to amend the visit visa provision of the existing immigration procedure 2065. Additionally, non-life accident insurance of up to 15 lakh Nepalese rupees (approximately USD 12,917) has also been suggested to be made mandatory for women going abroad.

Various civil society groups and human rights organizations have decried the proposed law. Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at Human Rights Watch, stated, “The abuse of migrant workers, including women, is a serious problem, but these policies only make it worse. Instead of denying a woman her right to leave her country, the Nepali government should better regulate recruitment agencies, work with destination country governments to put protections in place, and respond effectively to provide protection services when abuses occur. The Nepali government should include women in decision making, instead of treating them like children and second-class citizens.”

The immigration department released a press note defending the proposed law, arguing that it does not violate any constitutionally guaranteed rights. It also pointed out that the rule has been misrepresented in the media and it is just a proposal and not a law.



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