Senior leadership deciding factor in third round matchup

The women’s basketball coach was full of hopes on his way to Lubbock on Tuesday as his WNIT-champion hopeful Lady Frogs will try to steal a win from Texas Tech in the third round of the tournament tonight.

Head coach Jeff Mittie said he hopes his senior-laden team’s experience will give the Lady Frogs an advantage over a young Lady Raider squad that lists just one senior and includes nine transfer players.

“Our group has been in a lot of big games before,” Mittie said. “They’ve played in front of a lot of hostile crowds.”

Senior guard Adrianne Ross, who contributed 22 points and four steals in the Lady Frogs’ 85-56 win over Boise State on Sunday, said senior leadership will play a role in the run and gun-type game that both teams play.

“With our experience and our strong veteran group, if we can build a little bit more discipline, it will definitely be an advantage for (today’s) game,” Ross said.

Ross said bench play will also play a key role in keeping players fresh.

“We don’t get winded as much (for) as much as we run because we have so many players on the bench that can come in,” Ross said.

Mittie said TCU’s bench play has been a strength for the team all year.

“If you have a couple of players who get into foul trouble or struggle you have some players who can come off the bench and give you good minutes,” Mittie said. “I hope it comes into play in Lubbock.”

TCU (22-11) will need to play disciplined defense to contain Texas Tech (17-15) leading scorer Dominic Seals, who averaged 14.1 points per game this season and is the No. 13 leading scorer in the Big 12. In Tech’s second round win over Texas State, Seals led all scorers with 24 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for her ninth double-double of the season.

“We’ll try not to give her the same look many times in a row,” Mittie said. “Hopefully with that we can cause a little bit of confusion. She scores so many different ways … hopefully we can just make it a tough night for her and force her into a lot of tough shots.”

Mittie said though he was concerned going into the Boise State game, he thought his team played well and didn’t have anything to prove from not making the NCAA Tournament.

“You always have something to prove,” Mittie said. “Unfortunately we weren’t selected but we finished strong, and I think we’d like to finish this tournament strong.”

Ross said the team is excited about playing in March, regardless of what tournament it plays in.

“It’s March and it’s time to play,” Ross said. “There are a lot of teams that aren’t playing right now, whether it be in the NCAA Tournament, the WNIT or any other tournament, so it’s still good to play right now.”