OSU earns No. 2 seed in NCAA Tournament


Kalib LaChapelle, Multimedia Contributor

Corvallis is dancing.

For the fourth year in a row Oregon State women’s basketball team has punched their ticket for the NCAA tournament, this time in a season they were picked to finish 5th in their conference after losing key components of their team from last season to graduation.

“(Being selected) feels great. But you can’t forget how special it is to just know that you’re in (the tournament) first off,” said head coach Scott Rueck. “But this team has done incredible things and they have earned the right to see their name up there, to not have it be a surprise or even a question.”

The Beavers were selected as a two-seed by the selection committee and will play their first game of the tournament at home against Long Beach State Friday at 2 p.m. If the Beavers win, they will play Sunday against the winner of the Toledo and Creighton–again hosted in Gill Coliseum. The Beavers have been in limbo waiting for an opponent to prepare for since the end of the Pac-12 tournament over a week ago.

“It brings a lot of peace because now we know what to prepare for in practices. It’s been a good week working on ourselves resting our bodies,” said senior guard Sydney Wiese. “Now we know exactly what we are going to be facing in the first round and we can plan accordingly.”

Since is the two seed in the tournament they will be playing the 15 seed in the first round and then the winner of the game between the seven and 10 seeds. Even though they will be playing teams ranked lower, Rueck and the team are still giving them their full attention in the season that ends with any one loss.

“When you’re in this tournament there is something special about your team. Whatever it is everyone has a unique quality about them that makes them tough,” Wiese said. “We are looking forward to learning more about them and hopefully knowing them a little bit better than they know themselves.”

“Our veterans have just said to us that the NCAA tournament is the last stop in the year. Every team is out to give 100% effort and a lot of them are coming off of big tournament wins so they are confident,” said freshman guard Mikayla Pivec. “Even the teams who aren’t ranked as high will be quality teams because they made it to the tournament.”

If they make it out of Corvallis with two wins the Beavers will be headed south to Stockton, California in the closest regional to Corvallis. With how much Beaver Nation has supported them this far, they are expecting more of the support they have been so thankful for this season.

“Im super excited. The stockton region is a blessing but we have to make it out of Corvallis first,” Wiese said “We are focused on Long Beach State for now and hopefully we can play in Gill for one more go and hopefully we can do some damage in the tournament.”

“(Everyone) deserves it. This team has earned it and this crowd has earned it,” Rueck said. “The fans have been such a big part of what we have accomplished over the years. The fact that we get to stay home, potentially, if we make it to the Sweet Sixteen it is very fitting.”


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