So without further or do, here are the Games of the Day:
Game 1: Quinnipiac Bobcats (15-9; 10-4 in the MAAC) at Marist Red Foxes (19-6; 13-2 in the MAAC) at 5:00 PM ET
Watch it on: ESPNU and Watch ESPN
Why is this game significant? : This is a matchup between two mid major programs that made the NCAA Tournament last year. So you know, Quinnipiac joined the MAAC this year after playing in the Northeast Conference last year.
For Marist, though the Red Foxes had a rough start this season at 1-4, they included losses against Kentucky and Ohio State which are in the BCS leagues. They do have a Top 25 win on the schedule however by beating then-#20 Oklahoma back on December 21 at home, but the Sooners haven't been been too strong since.
One thing that stands out about this team is really good at is three point shooting, as each of Marist's top three scorers: sophomore guard/forward Madeline Blais, senior forward Emma O'Connor, and senior guard Leanne Ockenden all average over one made three per game. O'Connor actually averages over two made per game and shoots at an uber-scary clip too at nearly 50% from three. She's made 51-103 threes in 25 games.
For Quinnipiac, the Bobcats had their first ever 30 win regular season, an undefeated 18-0 record in Northeast Conference play, and their first ever NCAA Tournament berth, where they fell to Maryland in the first round. Still a historic season. Like Marist, they too had a tough start, and went 1-3, but two of those losses came against Louisville and St. John's. Their top three scorers this year's team: junior guard Jasmine Martin, senior forward Brittany McQuain, and Samantha Guastella average a combined 38.1 points per game and all were major pieces on last year's team as well.
While Iona right now is the leader in the MAAC with a 20-3 overall record and a 13-1 record in the conference, Don't be surprised to Marist or Quinnipiac win the conference tournament and get a berth into the Big Dance.
Game 2: #15 Arizona State Sun Devils (20-4; 9-3 in the Pac-12) at #6 Stanford Cardinal (22-2; 11-1 in the Pac-12) at 10:00 PM ET
Watch it on: Live Stream through the Pac-12's website, AND if you have a qualifying cable provider.
Why is this game significant? : This is a match between two Top 25 teams. That's obvious. But here's another reason.
Both Arizona State and Stanford are coming off losses against non-ranked teams. The Sun Devils were beaten by the arch-rival Arizona Wildcats 68-49 last Sunday on February 9, which is almost in stark contrast to a 60-36 win they had over that same Arizona team back on February 4. What makes that loss even worse for Arizona State is that Arizona was also 0-11 in Pac-12 play coming into that aforementioned loss last Sunday, not something a ranked team should have to go through.
Stanford suffered an 87-82 loss against Washington on the road this past Sunday, where the Huskies are now 13-10 overall, and 6-6 in Pac-12 play. At least that loss isn't as bad as the Arizona State loss to Arizona. And for the Wildcats themselves, they too will play tonight at 10:30 PM ET against California which will be on Pac-12 Network.
Anyway, back to the main point on this game. Stanford's offense is heavily revolved around senior forward Chiney Ogwumike who is averaging 27.2 points and 12.3 rebounds per game, and five additional players are averaging at least 7 points a game, including junior Amber Orrange and freshman Lilli Thompson.
Arizona State on the other hand does not have a single dominant force like Ogwumike, as no one on the team averages over 15 points a game. However seven players average at least seven points a game, led by redshirt senior guard Deja Mann who is averaging 11.5 poings a game on 39% shooting overall and from three (41-105 attempts). She missed the 2012-13 season due to a torn ACL she suffered right before the season started, and it's definitely fair to say that her absence was partly why Arizona State was 13-18 last season and 20-4 right now.
That's all I have on the two Games of the Day. Any other matches you plan on watching? Let us know in the comments below!
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