Kim Smith (4) and Shona Thorburn (10) celebrate a Utah basket late in their win over Arizona State Monday. (AP Photo)
March 22, 2006
University of Utah (26-6) vs. Boston College (21-11)
9:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25, 2006 - The Pit/Bob King Court (18,018)
Radio: Hot Ticket 700 AM
Audio Stream - www.UtahUtes.com
Utah, Boston College Set to Square Off in Sweet 16
The University of Utah women's basketball team is making its second appearance in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship tournament.
The No. 5-seeded Utes will be looking to make their first foray into the Elite Eight, when they face Boston College Saturday night at The Pit in Albuquerque, N.M.
Utah's only other Sweet 16 appearance came in 2001. The Utes fell to Notre Dame 69-54 in that contest, while the Irish went on to win the national championship.
No. 8 seed Boston College upset the No. 1 seed in the Albuquerque Region -- Ohio State -- Tuesday night, punching their ticket to the Sweet 16. The Eagles defeated the Buckeyes 79-69 Tuesday night in West Lafayette, Ind. Boston College is paced by 6-2 forward Brooke Queenan, who averages 14.9 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. Kindyll Dorsey set an NCAA Women's Tournament record with six three-pointers and scored 24 points to lead the Eagles over Ohio State. Dorsey averages 2.25 triples and 11.7 points per game.
The Utes and Eagles have never met on the hardwood.
Utah Fast Breaks
Utah is making its 14th appearance in the NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship tournament.
This is the Utes' second trip to the Sweet 16.
Utah is 0-1 in the Sweet 16, dropping a 69-54 decision to eventual national champion Notre Dame in 2001 at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
Utah is 1-0 this season against teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Utah's 86 points against Arizona State Monday was its second-highest total this season. The Utes scored 90 against Air Force on Jan. 18.
Utah is currently the No. 1 scoring team in the Mountain West Conference, averaging 69.7 points per game. The Utes have topped the 70-point mark in 12 of their last 19 outings. Utah is 17-0 this season when scoring 70 points or more.
Utah's scoring average of 69.7 points per game is 1.4 per game better than second-place TCU. Utah has never led the Mountain West Conference or the Western Athletic Conference in scoring, covering a span of 15 previous seasons.
The Utes ranked No. 64 in the nation in scoring offense in the latest report.
Senior forward Kim Smith ranks in the top 15 in 10 of 12 statistical categories released by the Mountain West Conference. She is the only MWC player to rank in 10 categories. Smith leads the league in scoring (19.7 ppg) and is second in rebounding (8.0 rpg).
Smith's 25-point effort against Arizona State on Monday marked the 17th time this season she has scored more than 20 points. For her career, Smith has reached 20 points or more 40 times. She tallied her seventh double-double of the season against Air Force on 3/18 with 29 points and 13 rebounds.
Senior point guard Shona Thorburn has shattered just about every assist record at the University of Utah and in the Mountain West Conference. Thorburn has dished out 680 career helpers, blowing away the school and conference records. The previous MWC record was held by former New Mexico standout Mandi Moore, who had 651 in her career. The Utah record had been held by Alli Bills, who recorded 612 assists in her four years with the Utes.
With 19 assists in the first two NCAA Tournament games this season, Thorburn has also broken her own Utah and MWC single-season assist records. She has now dropped 233 dimes this season, besting last year's total of 221. Thorburn's assist numbers are even more outstanding, considering she played the off guard spot as a freshman and sophomore.