March 11, 1999
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Coming off their fourth straight 20-win season, and armed with one of the best players in the nation, Tulane begins its run at a national championship.
The Green Wave (24-5) were the regular season and Conference USA tournament champions for the second time in three seasons. Tulane has won seven straight games.
Tulane, the East Region's sixth seed, will take on 11th-seeded St. Joseph's (22-7) on Saturday in the first round of the NCAA tournament in Durham, N.C.
Green Wave guard Grace Daley has emerged as one of the best perimeter players in the country. The 5-foot-8 junior averages 19.1 points and 5.3 assists per game. Daley averaged 24.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 2.3 steals in the three Conference USA tournament games, earning her MVP honors.
The Green Wave's second-leading scorer, reserve center Janell Burse, averages 10 points per game.
Tulane is the only school in the nation to rank in the top 11 in both field goal percentage and field goal percentage defense. The Green Wave is ranked 10th in field goal percentage defense, holding opponents to just 36 percent shooting. Tulane is making 47.9 percent of its shots to rank 11th in field goal percentage.
This is the fifth straight NCAA tournament appearance for the Green Wave.
The Hawks won the Atlantic 10 tournament with a 76-66 victory over Xavier on March 1. St. Joseph's is riding an 11-game win streak.
St. Joseph's boasts one of the nation's top freshman in Susan Moran, who leads the Hawks with 14.4 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. Senior Melissa Coursey, the Atlantic 10 tournament MVP, is second on the team in scoring with 13.0 points per game.
The winner of this game will take on the Holy Cross-Duke winner on