RICHMOND, VA - After their loss to Bowie State in the CIAA Semifinals, Virginia Union Women's Head Coach AnnMarie Gilbert said their body of work was good enough to receive a bid to this NCAA Division II Tournament.
She was right!
The Lady Panthers received an at-large bid in this year's NCAA Tournament, extending their streak of consecutive tournament appearances to a school record five straight years.
"We want to be excellent in all that we do," VUU Head Coach AnnMarie Gilbert excitedly said. "Our goal is to not win fewer than 20 games in a season. We don't want there to ever be a year we don't make the Atlantic Region."
VUU received the #5 seed in the Atlantic Region and will travel to Indiana, Pennsylvania for the first three rounds. They will face a familiar foe in Bowie State in the first round. A team that Coach Gilbert thought they would face before the brackets were revealed.
"I called that correctly as well," stated Coach Gilbert laughingly. "What a great rivalry that has become. I'm excited for my kids. They've worked hard."
This will mark the fourth meeting between the two CIAA powers this season. Bowie leads the series 2-1.
"The great thing is the scouting report is already done," Gilbert explained. "Bowie is really resilient. And what I've seen over the last couple of years, their seniors just don't fold."
Bowie State comes into this matchup tied as the number one scoring defense in the country, allowing only 48.9 points per game. They held VUU to a season worst 41 points in their last meeting in the CIAA Semifinals.
"Our focus has got to be better," Gilbert stressed. "We got to rebound better, they outrebounded us by five. We got to score the ball. We didn't and they kind of did they're usual."