KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The only program to appear in every NCAA Tournament, the University of Tennessee women’s basketball team is headed to the postseason for the 36th time.
The Lady Vols are seeded No. 5 in the Oklahoma City Regional and will play No. 12 seed Dayton in the first round in Louisville, Ky. at 4 p.m. ET on Saturday at the KFC Yum! Center. The game will be televised by ESPN2 and also carried on the Lady Vol Radio Network.
Host Louisville (27-7) will meet Chattanooga (21-10) in the other first round game at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday. The winner of the two contests will meet in the second round on Monday. Tip time and TV info. for that game are to be determined.
The Lady Vols are 28-1 all-time in the NCAA First Round. The only blemish is a first-round loss to Ball State, 71-55, in Bowling Green, Ky., on March 22, 2009.
The Lady Vols (19-11) and Dayton (22-9) will meet for the third time, with UT holding a 2-0 advantage. The last meeting was on March 22, 2010, when #3/3 Tennessee defeated the Flyers, 92-64, in Knoxville during the second round of NCAA play.
Dayton is the regular season co-champion of the Atlantic 10 Conference as well as the A-10 tourney winner. Tennessee is 23-0 all-time vs. that league with the last win coming against Davidson, 75-40, in Knoxville on Nov. 28, 2012.
The Lady Vols, who are 123-27 all-time in NCAA play, are the only school to appear in all 36 tournaments, winning eight national championships. Meanwhile, Dayton is making its seventh NCAA appearance, last making the field in 2015.
Tennessee played 12 of the 64 teams in the NCAA Tournament field this season, including victories over South Carolina, Notre Dame, Stanford and Mississippi State, as well as Kentucky, LSU, Missouri and Troy. UT suffered losses to tourney teams Baylor, Texas, Mississippi State, Texas A&M and Auburn.
“They asked a lot of questions about Dayton. I think we’ve moved past that. I think we’ve had a great week, week and a half really of practice. I would be shocked if we went in thinking, ‘Oh it’s just Dayton. Dayton’s a really good basketball team and I think our kids understand it.”