CHAPEL HILL --- North Carolina was awarded the No. 3 seed in the Bridgeport Region and will open play in the 2013 NCAA Women's Basketball Championship Sunday, March 24, against America East champion Albany at the Bob Carpenter Center on the campus of the University of Delaware. The game will follow the matchup between sixth-seeded Delaware and 11th-seeded West Virginia and will start at approximately 2:30 p.m. on ESPN2.
"Our kids are excited, they're playing well and they are excited to be in the tournament and have the chance to compete again," head coach Sylvia Hatchell said Monday night. "I was excited, I really wanted a three seed because that's the seed we had when we won the national championship. My staff has already started preparing, we'll break film down and practice and prepare for our first game Sunday afternoon against Albany."
UNC is one of five Atlantic Coast Conference teams in the field, joining No. 2 seed Duke, No. 4 seed Maryland and No. 8 seeds Florida State and Miami. In addition to the four conference foes, the Tar Heels also faced tournament teams Tennessee and Iowa during the regular season. Carolina produced one of the biggest turnarounds in the nation in 2013, increasing its win total by eight and improving 75 places in the official NCAA RPI from the end of 2012 (90) to Selection Monday (15).
"You can't say enough about the leadership of our crew by our seniors Tierra Ruffin-Pratt, Krista Gross and Waltiea Rolle. They've done an outstanding job. We're 28-6, we've had a great year thus far, but we're not finished."
"First, it's just great seeing our name up there because last year we watched it and our name didn't show up, so it's important that we got into the tournament," Tierra Ruffin-Pratt said. "Having a three seed is a great set-up for us to have a great NCAA tournament.
"These next few days before we head out to Delaware we'll just focus on Albany and go from there. I think Krista, Waltiea and I have done a great job leading this team and for us to get the best seed we've had in our four years here is something we are really proud of."