Four Southland Teams Make The Big Dance
March 16, 2017
Four local college basketball teams punched their ticket to the 2017 NCAA Tournament that started this week. Both the UCLA men’s and women’s teams are dancing along with the USC men’s team and Long Beach State’s women’s team. The No. 11 seeded USC men started tournament play last Wednesday with a play in game against Providence. If they win that game they will face the No. 6 seeded Southern Methodist in the first round on Friday in Tulsa Oklahoma at 12 p.m. The No. 3 seeded UCLA men’s team will play their first round game on Friday against No. 14 seeded Kent State in Sacramento at 7 p.m.
The No. 4 seeded UCLA women’s team will play their first game at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday against No. 13 seeded Boise State on the Bruin’s home court inside Pauley Pavilion. They will play the winner of the No. 5 Texas A&M and No. 12 Pennsylvania on Monday at UCLA. The No. 15 Long Beach State’s women’s team will face No. 2 Oregon State on Friday at 2 p.m. in Corvallis, Oregon. All four teams will have rough time getting pass the Regional semifinals, which is also known as the Sweet 16.
The Bruin men will probably face No. 2 Kentucky in the semifinals and although UCLA beat the Wildcats in December, it’s hard to get pass a good team twice in one season. The Bruins have the talent to make that happen but their last two games were two of their worst games of the season. If they can regroup and play like they did in February the Bruins can advance to the regional final. If the Trojans can get pass Providence and Southern Methodist in the first two games they will probably face No. 3 Baylor in the second round. If they beat Baylor they will likely battle No. 2 seeded Duke in the Regional semifinals.
The UCLA women are on a collision course to face No.1 seeded Connecticut if they win their first and second round games. Connecticut is 32-0 and they are currently riding an eye popping 107-game winning streak. If the Bruins reach the third round they will have to play a perfect game to beat the Huskies. If the Long Beach State women’s team can upset a talented Oregon State team they have a good chance to make it to the Sweet 16 round. If they make it that fall they will probably play No. 3 Florida State.
That’s why they call it March Madness. Anything can happen. The men’s and women’s teams that get hot and win six games in a row will be able to hold that championship trophy high and say they are the champions of college basketball.