Women's Basketball 2018 NCAA Tournament Lexington Region Round of 64 Game Breakdowns

Lexington Region Round of 64 Game Breakdowns
Louisville’s road to the Final Four begins at home against Boise State. The Broncos are a good shooting team and they will need to be nearly perfect to take down the Cardinals. This is a Boise State squad that can stay close for a while though. They are a tough team on the glass and will not be immediately run out of the gym. In the end though, Louisville’s Asia Durr and Myisha Hines-Allen will be too tough for the tough Broncos.
#8 Marquette vs. #9 Dayton
This should be a fun game that has scoring threats all over the floor. Both teams are high scoring and balanced offenses that can get big games from a variety of players. Marquette had won eight games straight before falling to DePaul in the Big East Tournament final, while Dayton has looked susceptible following a loss at Saint Louis in the regular season finale and a loss to George Washington in the A-10 Tournament. But this is a very talented and athletic Dayton team. If JaVonna Layfield, who averages 12.1 points and 12.9 rebounds, can have a big day, Dayton could move on to face Louisville.
Missouri has been a consistent team this year. For the most part they have won the games they should win. They also beat some teams above them in the SEC pecking order like South Carolina and Tennessee. Sophie Cunningham is the star of the team, averaging 18.0 points, 3.0 assists and 4.8 rebounds. Florida Gulf Coast has a potent offense and makes nearly a dozen three-pointers per game. If they can make the most out of those many three-point attempts, the Eagles could make this a very interesting game.
#4 Stanford vs. #13 Gonzaga
By Stanford’s standards losing ten games is not a good year. The Cardinal have some quality wins, but they also have some tough losses. But with Brittany McPhee leading the way, Stanford should be able to at least get past Gonzaga. The Bulldogs will not make it a simple task though. Junior forward Jill Barta has played in big games. With a decent defense and an offense that does not turn the ball over too often, Gonzaga can stay close enough to give Barta the opportunity to lead her team to victory.
Oregon State’s stellar defense will be tested by Western Kentucky’s Tashia Brown. She averages 22.7 points per game. Ivy Brown adds 17.0. The high scoring Lady Toppers are an efficient offense that rarely turns the ball over. How well Brown and Brown can crack that Oregon State defense will make all the difference. The Beavers boast Marie Gulich in the frontcourt. Her 3.0 blocks per game will certainly make WKU think twice about getting into the paint.
#3 Tennessee vs. #14 Liberty
Tennessee has proven that they can beat anybody on any given day. Their tougher games will come down the road, but for now they should get a nice start against Liberty. The Flames went 16-2 in Big South play and are a team that can compete with some of the big conference teams in the rebounding department. Tennessee is a better rebounding team though thanks to center Mercedes Russell. With Russell in the paint and Jaime Nared on the wing, the Lady Vols just have too much offensive firepower to lose in the first round.
Katelynn Flaherty has waited a long time to get to the NCAA Tournament. After a few trips to the WNIT, she and her Michigan teammates finally get a shot at the big stage. Flaherty has been a huge scoring threat throughout her career. So far in her senior season she is averaging 23.2 points per game. This is a Wolverines squad that shoots the ball well, especially from beyond the arc and is extremely tough on the glass. Northern Colorado might be seeded a spot or two higher than most expected, but Savannah Scott and Savannah Smith are a potent backcourt duo that can do a lot of damage.
#2 Baylor vs. #15 Grambling
Baylor lost at UCLA back on November 18th. They have not lost since. And in that stretch they beat teams like Stanford, Oklahoma twice and Texas three times. They have not played the toughest schedule, at least compared to some teams in the ACC and SEC, but this is a very, very good two seed even without recently injured Kristy Wallace. Grambling won the SWAC Tournament to reach the NCAAs. Just getting here was the goal for the Lady Tigers. The key statistic here is the rebounding margin. Baylor is first in the nation at +18.7. Grambling is 335th at -8.7