The 4th seeded Oregon State Beavers Women’s Basketball team opens up the NCAA Tournament to take on the 13th seeded Boise State Broncos in Gill Coliseum. Tip-off is slated for 2:30 PM PST on Saturday, March 23rd. Watch on ESPN2 or check out the team’s Twitter page for ways to follow along live. Let’s take a closer look at the Broncos.
Boise State (28-4 overall, 16-2 Mountain West)
Last season: 23-10 overall, 14-4 in MWC (T-1st), lost in first round of NCAA Tournament
The Boise State Broncos come into Gill Coliseum for the first time since 2000 where the Oregon State Beavers handed them 66-55 loss. This Broncos team is like none other though, having won a school record 28 games this year. Two thousand and nineteen marks their fourth trip to the NCAA Tournament in the last five seasons.
Of their 28 wins, most notable would be versus Wyoming (twice), New Mexico, and Washington (hey, they beat the Beavers). The Mountain West regular season champions are currently on a seven game winning streak, including three in the Mountain West Tournament. Of their four losses, which includes one against #1 seed Louisville (a game they trailed by just three at halftime), there is one bad loss at Washington State (24 points).
The Broncos are coached by an Idaho native in Gordy Presnell, who is in his 14th year with the team. The Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year has now taken Boise State to the NCAA Tournament five times, though never past the first round.
Who to watch
#14 - Braydey Hodgins, Junior Guard
The Mountain West Tournament MVP, Braydey Hodgins, is the Broncos leading scorer at 13.4 point per game. In the last 12 games she has really done most of her damage, averaging nearly 19 a game, including a jaw-dropping 37 against Nevada in the conference tournament. The All-Mountain West Team member will look to continue her hot streak in the postseason.
#23 - Jayde Christopher, Junior Guard
While not a huge threat scoring wise at 6.3 points per game, Jayde Christopher can make sure her teammates do. The former Kansas Jayhawk led the team with 5.5 assists per game, good for 23rd in the country. Twice this season she has tallied double digit assists. Then in the conference tournament finals, she nailed this bomb.
#14 - Marta Hermida, Senior Guard
A All-Mountain West Team member a year ago, Marta Hermida has been a steady contributor in her four year Boise State career, averaging 9.7 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 3.1 assists in 127 games (120 starts). The Spanish native earned an All-Mountain West Tournament selection after nearly collecting a triple-double in the semi-finals against Fresno State with 30 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists.
The Beavers are 5-4 in their last nine games, ending with a disappointing loss to Washington in the second round of the PAC-12 Tournament. It has been two weeks since this team has played a game. Will they come out rested and focused? Or will they look rusty and continue to struggle finding the net from long distance? I believe we’ll see the former, but Boise State should not be taken lightly as they have the firepower to threaten an upset. Don’t forget, Long Beach State came into Gill two years ago and nearly shocked a #2 seeded Oregon State team. Beavers come out on fire to show that there will be no upset.