Saint Louis will host IUPUI of the Summit League in a Women’s National Invitation Tournament first-round game Thursday, March 16.
The winner of the SLU-IUPUI game will play the winner of the Indiana-Ball State game, also scheduled for Thursday, in the second round. The date and time for that game will be announced following the completion of play Thursday night. The Billikens defeated Ball State 59-55 in last year’s WNIT second round at Chaifetz Arena. Saint Louis last met Indiana – whose coaching staff includes former Billiken assistant Glenn Box – during the 2013-14 season.
IUPUI, which reached the second round of the 2016 WNIT, brings a 24-8 record into Thursday’s contest. The Jaguars tied South Dakota State for second place (12-4) in the Summit League and went on to reach the conference tournament final, dropping a 77-69 overtime decision to regular-season champion Western Illinois. IUPUI is one of three Summit League teams in the WNIT field, joining defending champion South Dakota and South Dakota State.
Saint Louis, making its third WNIT appearance overall and second in as many seasons, also is 24-8. The Billikens tied Saint Joseph’s for third place (12-4) in the Atlantic 10 Conference and fell 75-65 to eventual champion Dayton in the A-10 Championship semifinals. Junior point guard Jackie Kemph was selected A-10 co-Player of the Year for a second consecutive season and was joined on the All-Conference first team by senior center Sadie Stipanovich.
The Billikens own a 2-0 series lead over the Jaguars, winning games in the 1998-99 and 2000-01 seasons.
Saint Louis reached the third round of the 2016 WNIT and hosted all three games. SLU defeated Little Rock and Ball State before being eliminated by Western Kentucky in overtime.
Other Atlantic 10 teams earning a WNIT bid are George Washington, Saint Joseph’s, Fordham and Duquesne. The A-10 tied the Mid-American Conference for most teams in the 64-team field. George Washington hosts Navy, Saint Joseph’s hosts Virginia, Fordham travels to Georgetown, and Duquesne is at Drexel.