Women's Basketball - Tue, Mar. 2, 2010
CHICAGO - Propelled by its greatest regular season record (27-1) and highest national ranking (No. 2), the Saint Xavier University women's basketball team feels like all the pieces are in place for both its longest postseason run to date and a legitimate chance to take home the school's first national championship trophy in any sport. Led by a pair of 2009 NAIA All-Americans in senior forward Erin Hannemann (Homer Glen, Ill./Providence Catholic) and senior guard Kathlyn McClain (Oak Forest, Ill./Converse College/Marian Catholic), the Cougars know that the time is now to bring the historic hardware to Chicago's South Side. SXU's women's basketball program is no stranger to success having averaged 25 wins a season since its inception in 2000 as well as winning eight Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) crowns, five CCAC Tournament titles and seven consecutive berths in the NAIA Women's Basketball National Tournament during that span.
"With four starters and two All-Americans returning from last year's 26-5 team, I think our team knows that they have the chance to do something special at the NAIA National Tournament this year," said Saint Xavier University women's basketball coach Bob Hallberg. "We have made seven consecutive trips to the 32-team national tournament and never advanced past the Sweet 16,' but this year I think the team won't be satisfied unless they get the chance to win a national championship." Saint Xavier (27-1 overall/9-1 CCAC) will now take the No. 1 seed and home court advantage into this week's CCAC Tournament, which begins this evening. The Cougars have earned a first-round bye for the tournament with the top seed and will open with a 7 p.m. semifinals match-up on Thursday, March 4, at the Shannon Center. SXU will face the winner of tonight's No. 4 seed Indiana University-South Bend (IUSB) and No. 5 seed Robert Morris University (Ill.) match-up.