No. 2 Pioneers Open NEC Tournament Sunday vs. No. 7 St. Francis Brooklyn
Setting the Scene... For the 14th straight year, Head Coach Ed Swanson has led the Sacred Heart Women's Basketball team to a top-three finish in the Northeast Conference, as the No. 2 Sacred Heart Women's Basketball team hosts No. 7 St. Francis Brooklyn Sunday afternoon in the William H. Pitt Center in the quarterfinal round of the 2013 Northeast Conference Tournament. This is the first time these teams have ever faced in post season play. In the regular season, they split, each collecting a win on the road.
Up Next... If the Pioneers win on Sunday, they will face the higher remaining seed winner of the #6 Mount St. Mary's at #3 Monmouth and #5 Central Conn. State at #4 Saint Francis U on Wednesday in the semifinals.
This Season Against the Terriers... In their first meeting this season, St. Francis Brooklyn handed the Pioneers their first NEC loss, 56-47, in the conference opener, prompting SHU's worst start to conference play ever as Sacred Heart opened 1-3. Poor shooting in the first half did the damage--SHU only shot 26.7% from the floor--as it almost lost the game for Sacred Heart in the most recent matchup. Last Saturday, the Pioneers were fueled by a 25-8 run in the first half before scoring just 19 points in the second half, compared to 38 in the first. Gabrielle Washington led the way with 20 points, her eleventh 20-plus performance of the season.
14 Years Running... Last Wednesday evening, with the 58-50 win over Bryant, the Sacred Heart Women's Basketball Team clicnched the No. 2 seed in the 2013 Northeast Conference Tournament. This is the 14th-straight year that the Pioneers have cemented a spot in the Top 3. Since joining the NEC in 1999-00, SHU has never finished lower than tied for third. Sacred Heart has finished with sole possession of first place on three occasions. All three of those times, the Pioneers took home the championship.
The Tournament at the Pitt Center... Head Coach Ed Swanson has led the Sacred Heart Women's Basketball Team to a 12-3 record when playing NEC Tournament games at home in the William H. Pitt Center, including three championship runs.