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Dance Card: Villanova, Big East at-large

Will slow and steady win the race?


Who? The Wildcats of Villanova.

What? Let us all be eternally grateful that Villanova dropped the use of "Wildkittens" for their women's teams. Will D. Cat is somewhat more suited to the weather than his live predecessors.

Where? Radnor Township, Pennsylvania, just outside Philadelphia.

When? March 24th, in Palo Alto, California.

Why? The record isn't great, but the RPI and the SOS will do.

How? They were an at-large selection.

Surprise? Predicted to finish tenth in the conference, they came out of the morass in the middle at seventh.

RPI: 28

SOS: 31

Record: 21-10 (9-7 Big East)

Good wins: At Syracuse.

Bad losses: At Providence.

Who's driving this thing? Harry Perretta, since Naismith took the bottom out of the peach basket 1978.

Extra, Extra! The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News, via

Villanova's offense is predicated on the patience of a saint and constant passing around the perimeter until they find an open player with three seconds left on the shot clock. Again and again. Villanova is not a fun team to watch. But they win with their system. Senior forward Laura Sweeney leads the Wildcats with 13.9 points and 6.9 rebounds per game, but senior guard Rachel Roberts has also been a force to be reckoned with, averaging 11 points per game. And I have a soft spot for sophomore Emily Leer, because I'm a sucker for a woman who can hit a hook shot.