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Back To The Dance: @BonniesWBB Returns To NCAA Tournament With First Round Game vs. Oklahoma State

No. 10 ST. BONAVENTURE (23-7, 12-4 Atlantic 10) vs. No. 7 OKLAHOMA STATE (21-9, 11-7 Big 12)
Friday, March 18 - 7:30 p.m. (EST - 4:30 p.m. PST)
Gill Coliseum - Corvallis, Ore.

Printable Bracket | Interactive Bracket

FAN INFORMATION
Tickets: All session tickets are $36. Single session tickets are $20. St. Bonaventure's fan section will be located in Section D, Row 1-5, Seats 1-23. Call 1-800-GO-BEAVS for more information. 
Parking & Directions: Click Here 

Tournament Central: Click Here
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In The News: Click Here

GAME COVERAGE
Live Radio: WGWE 105.9 FM (Play-by-play: Mike "Smitty" Smith)
Live Radio Stream: Click Here
Live Stats: Click Here
Watch ESPN link: Click Here 
Twitter: @BonniesWBB | Instagram: @GoBonnies

TV COVERAGE
Friday's game will be broadcast live on ESPN2. Clay Matvick will have the call with Sue Bird providing analysis. Broadcasts of certain games will be aired regionally.

St. Bonaventure Game Notes (PDF)

RELATED LINKS
ST. BONAVENTURE: Roster | Schedule | Stats
OKLAHOMA STATE: Roster | Schedule | Stats

OPENING TIP OVERVIEW

  • The St. Bonaventure women's basketball team will make its second NCAA Tournament appearance and first since 2012 when it travels to Corvallis, Ore. for Friday's first round. St. Bonaventure, an at-large selection from the Atlantic 10, will face off with Big 12 at-large Oklahoma State which earned a No. 7 seed after posting a 21-9 record this season. Friday's game is scheduled to tip at 7:30 p.m. EST on ESPN2.
  • The Bonnies have earned the No. 10 seed in the Dallas Region and will be one of four teams playing on the campus of Oregon State University. The other game Friday will be second-seeded and host Oregon State (28-4) taking on No. 15 Troy (20-12) at 5 p.m. EST, also on ESPN2.
  • Friday's meeting with Oklahoma State will mark just the second-ever game between the two schools and first since 1997. The Cowgirls won that matchup, 68-59, played at a tournament in Hawaii when Bona head coach Jim Crowley was on the Bonnies staff as an assistant coach.
  • Bona went 4-2 against Tournament teams this year with wins over Buffalo (1-0), George Washington (1-0), James Madison (1-0) and Duquesne (1-1) and a setback at DePaul (0-1).
  • St. Bonaventure will seek to bounce back from an upset loss to VCU in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 Tournament earlier this month in Richmond. VCU was the only Atlantic 10 team the Bonnies did not beat this year.
  • Oklahoma State is making its fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance despite being picked eighth in the Big 12 Preseason Poll. The Cowgirls finished fourth in the Big 12 this season with an 11-7 mark, reaching 20 overall wins for the fifth straight year under coach Jim Littell who was named Big 12 Coach of the Year. OSU lost to Oklahoma, 61-43, in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament.
  • Friday's game will be a matchup of two of the nation's best defenses. The Bonnies rank 28th in the country in scoring defense at 55.5 points per game allowed while Oklahoma State also surrenders just 57 points per contest. OSU also excels on the boards, outrebounding opponents by over a +7 margin, ranking 28th in the country in that category.
  • Oklahoma State is led by senior forward Brittney Martin, the Big 12 Player of the Year. Martin is the only Big 12 player this year to average a double-double, leading the conference in both scoring (20.4 ppg) and rebounds (11.3 rpg).
  • St. Bonaventure has made just one previous trip to the Big Dance, but the Bonnies certainly made it a memorable one by reaching the Sweet 16 in 2012. That year, the Bonnies were seeded fifth and defeated Florida Gulf Coast, 72-65, in overtime in the first round and then advanced to the Sweet 16 with a 66-63 victory vs. Marist before falling to Notre Dame in the regional semifinal.
  • The winner of Friday's first round game advances to play Sunday vs. the winner of host Oregon State vs. Troy. - Bona has not played a Big 12 opponent since Dec. 8, 2012 - a 67-47 loss at West Virginia. 

CORVALLIS SNAPSHOT
Oregon State earned hosting rights as a No. 2 seed after winning its first Pac-12 championship in school history to cap a 28-4 season behind Pac-12 Player of the Year Jamie Weisner. A year ago, Oregon State also hosted, defeating South Dakota State in the first round before falling to Gonzaga at home.- Oklahoma State returns to the NCAA Tournament after suffering a loss in the first round last year vs. Florida Gulf Coast in the 7/10 game, however last year OSU was the No. 10 seed. That loss snapped a four-game first-round NCAA Tournament winning streak for the Cowgirls. Previous to last year, their last first-round loss was in 2007, also as a No. 10 seed.- No. 15 Troy is the Sun Belt champion after getting past Arkansas-Little Rock, 61-60, in the league title game. The Trojans have their first Sun Belt title in program history and are making their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1997.

BONNIES LOCK DOWN DEFENSE
For the season, opponents are shooting 34.8 percent against the SBU defense. That total ranks first in the Atlantic 10 and 13th in the nation.

  • Opposing teams are averaging 55.5 points per game against the Bona defense - that ranks second in the A-10 and 28th in the nation in scoring defense.
  • Bona has held opponents to single digits in a quarter 27 different times this season (23 percent of all quarters played).
  • Opponents have scored 59 points or less 20 times this season.
  • The SBU defense has held opponents under 40 percent shooting from the floor in 22 games this season. The Bonnies are 19-3 in those games. 
  • Opponents shot just 36.2 percent against the St. Bonaventure defense last year. Among A-10 teams, only George Washington (36.1 percent) held opponents to a lower field goal percentage.
  • Opponents traditionally have a tough time scoring against the Bonnies. Since the 2008-09 season, the Bonnies have finished in the top five in the conference in scoring defense six times – including the last four seasons. They twice finished first (2011-12, 2009-10).

DRUMMOND AMONG A-10'S MOST IMPROVED
Sophomore Miranda Drummond was praised by the Bonnies coaching staff for her hard work during the offseason and her efforts have paid off this season. Drummond has upped her points per game average by 9.1 ppg over her freshman season. Only one A-10 player has a bigger jump season-to-season - Amy Griffin of La Salle. Drummond has been key to the Bonnies' success - along with often defending the opposition's leading scorer, she ranks among the A-10's leaders in scoring (12.4 ppg, 17th), free throw percentage (83.6%, first), 3's made (55, seventh) and three-point percentage (36.2%, seventh).

NUMBERS TO BE REMEMBERED
This year's edition of the St. Bonaventure women's basketball team has put itself high in the program record books including: The Bonnies have set the all-time record for blocks in a season:

  • 1. 2015-16 -- 129 (30 games)
    2. 2014-15 -- 112 (30 games)
    3. 1988-89 -- 103 (28 games)

     
  • St. Bonaventure currently has the second-best winning percentage in school history, behind only the 2011-12 Sweet 16 team:
    1. 2011-12 -- .886 (31-4)
    2. 2015-16 -- .767 (23-7)
    3. 2009-10 -- .697 (23-10)

     
  • Shooting over 76 percent at the line, the Bonnies are among the best teams in school history at the foul line:
    1. 2009-10 -- .798 
    2. 1994-95 -- .780
    3. 1999-00 -- .767
    4. 2015-16 -- .763
    5.1992-93 -- .759

     
  • This year, SBU has been one of the most prolific 3-point shooting teams in program history as well:
    1. 2010-11 -- 224 3's made
    2. 2011-12 -- 213
    3. 2008-09 -- 192
    4. 2015-16 -- 179
    5. 2009-10 -- 172

ONE FOR THE RECORD BOOKS
With 12 conference victories, the Bonnies have earned double digit wins in Atlantic 10 play for just the third time in 29 seasons as an A-10 member. This year's team joins the 2011-12 (14-0) and 2013-14 squads (11-5) as the only double-digit A-10 seasons in program history. The 12 A-10 wins are second-most in Bonnies history behind only the 14-0 team from 2011-12.

DYNAMIC THREE-POINT DUO
The Bonnies duo of senior Nyla Rueter and sophomore Miranda Drummond is the most prolific three-point shooting combination in the Atlantic 10 this season: the pair have combined for 124 treys this year, the most of any teammate duo in the A-10. The next closest duo is Duquesne's Chassidy Omogrosso and April Robinson (123 3's).

RUFF KEEPS BONNIES RUNNING SMOOTH
Sophomore Mariah Ruff has at least one assist in 29 of 30 games. She's averaged 3.8 assists per game in conference play.- Ruff has handed out four or more assists 21 times this year including 16 of the past 19 games. She logged a career-high seven assists vs. Georgetown on Dec. 5 and has five or more assists seven times this year. The Oneonta, N.Y. native has assisted 28 percent of the team's field goals while on the floor. On Feb. 24 at Fordham, Ruff scored a season-high 21 points while matching a career-high of seven rebounds. That game, however, is the only game she has played this season without an assist.

BONNIES POSTSEASON HISTORY
NCAA TOURNAMENT
2012
First Round - vs. FGCU: W, 72-65 (OT)
Second Round - vs. Marist: W, 66-63
Sweet 16 - vs. Notre Dame: L, 79-35

WNIT
2014
First Round - vs. Charlotte: W, 81-62
Second Round - at Bowling Green: L, 76-65

2011
First Round - vs. Lehigh: W, 77-43
Second Round - at Syracuse: L, 63-50

2010
First Round - vs. Robert Morris: W, 76-50
Second Round - vs. Northwestern: L, 66-62

2009
First Round - vs. West Virginia: W, 68-63
Second Round - at Wisconsin: W, 56-51
Third Round - vs. South Florida: L, 80-66