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LSU earns first top seed at NCAAs

3/17/2003 - LSU Tigers

BATON ROUGE, La. -- LSU coach Sue Gunter felt no need to
lobby for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Gunter was confident
her team's résumé could stand on its own.

Gunter's confidence was well founded.

For the first time in school history, the LSU women's basketball
team is heading to the NCAA Tournament as a No. 1 seed.

"It's been the most special year since I've been here,'' LSU
senior forward Ke-Ke Tardy. "Our team has been consistent all year
and we've worked really hard. For it to come down to getting a No.
1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, it shows how special this season has
been.''

The third-ranked Lady Tigers (27-3) will be the top-seeded team
in the West Regional at Eugene, Ore., opening play against No. 16
seed Southwest Texas (18-13) on Saturday.

LSU has twice been seeded as high as second, most recently in
1991.

"The fact that we are a No. 1 seed is sort of a culmination,''
Gunter said of her team's season. "It's another thing we haven't
done.''

LSU handed Southwest Texas its second worst loss of the season,
a 91-40 drubbing on Dec. 21. The Bobcats have won seven straight
games, including the Southland Conference Tournament championship
68-56 over Texas-San Antonio, to earn the school's second NCAA bid.

"They're playing well. They're a lot better than when we played
them earlier. It's a whole new ballgame. We'll see what happens.''

LSU and Duke are the lone top seeds playing away from home after
the NCAA opted to institute predetermined sites for the first time.