Fort Collins, Colo. - The Women's National Invitation Tournament is excited to announce its 64-team field for the Postseason WNIT.
The WNIT kicks off postseason action Wednesday with first-round games. All games are held on the campuses of participating schools. All 64 teams will play in the first round, featuring 32 games. That will be followed by 16 games in Round 2, eight third-round games, four quarterfinal games, two semifinal games, and the championship. The WNIT championship game will be played Saturday, April 2, and will be hosted by one of the two final participating schools.
Toledo has been selected to participate in the WNIT for the second-consecutive season. The 2010-11 Mid-American Conference regular-season champions will entertain Colonial Athletic Association member Delaware (20-13) in a first-round match-up on Wednesday, March 16. Tip-off time is slated for 7:00 p.m. in Savage Arena. The Rockets are one of 31 automatic qualifiers in the field who were regular-season conference champions that did not receive bids to the NCAA Tournament.
Kent State (20-9) will take on Duquesne (22-8) Thursday, March 17 in the first round.The 2011 season marks the second time the Golden Flashes will appear in the WNIT and third time overall. It is the first time in program history Kent State will be in postseason play in consecutive seasons. It also marks the eighth time Kent State has advanced to postseason play (NCAA 1982, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002; WNIT 2004, 2010, 2011).
For the first time since 1984, Central Michigan is playing in college basketball's postseason. The Chippewas (20-10) will face the Illinois State Redbirds (20-10), who finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference, in the opening round of the WNIT on March 17.
After winning 22 games and advancing all the way to the Mid-American Conference Tournament Championship game, the Eastern Michigan University women's basketball team was rewarded with a berth to the WNIT. The Eagles will open the Postseason WNIT with a 7 p.m. game Thursday, March 17, inside the EMU Convocation Center against the University of Michigan.
The WNIT awards an automatic berth to each of the nation's 31 conferences. The spot goes to the team that finishes the highest in the regular-season conference standings that does not advance to the NCAA Tournament. If there is a tie, the WNIT abides by the conference tiebreaker. A team earns the Automatic Qualifying berth regardless of its overall record. However, to be considered for a WNIT at-large berth, a team must have an overall record of .500 or better.