INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Receiving an at-large bid into the 2014 NCAA Tournament, East Texas Baptist University will be making their eighth appearance in the tournament. ETBU has made the NCAA Tournament in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2013.
“It’s an honor to be given and at-large bid to go to the regionals as it is a testament to the great year the girls have had,” says head coach Janae Shirley. “We will be playing with the best and we are excited for the opportunity.”
It is the second straight year that ETBU has made the tournament and fifth time in the last six years. Last year, ETBU went 3-2 falling in the regional championship game. ETBU has an overall record of 17-13 in the NCAA Tournament and won the 2010 national championship. The eight appearances is the most in the ASC tied with Louisiana College.
ETBU will be facing very familiar teams in Texas-Tyler (41-4) and former American Southwest Conference member Texas Lutheran University (32-7). The NCAA regional tournament has a different look this year as there are 14 regional tournaments and eight super regional tournaments. The West Region was the only region to have two three-team regional tournaments as Linfield, Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, and the Redlands will play in the other regional. The winners of the regional will then meet up for a three-game series in the super regional.
The format for the Tyler Regional is that everybody will play each other on Friday with the possibility of a team being eliminated. ETBU starts off the tournament on Friday at 3:30 vs. Texas Lutheran and then faces host Texas-Tyler at 6:00 p.m. ETBU and Texas-Tyler have played each other 14 times in the last two years with seven of the games coming in the post season. Currently, Texas-Tyler is ranked second and ETBU eighth in the NFCA National Poll. ETBU last played Texas Lutheran when they were ranked 20th in the nation at the 2013 ASC Tournament winning, 3-1.
The tournament will start on Friday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. at Suddenlink Field in Tyler, Texas, as Texas-Tyler will play Texas Lutheran.