UCF Set For NCAA First Round Matchup

Live Stats Watch Game Notes NCAA Tournament Central

ORLANDO – The UCF women's basketball team faces Northwestern in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament on Monday afternoon in San Antonio, Texas.
The 10th-seeded Knights (16-4) and seventh-seeded Wildcats (15-8, 5-11 The American) tip at 4 p.m. ET in Bill Greehey Arena on ESPNU.
Date: Monday, March 22
Time: 4 p.m. ET
Watch: ESPNU
Live Stats
NCAA Tournament Central

  • UCF earned its second-straight at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament (2020 NCAA Tournament canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic).
  • The Knights are making their sixth NCAA Tournament appearance since joining the Division I ranks in 1984-85.
  • Each of the first four appearances was via an automatic berth, winning the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament twice (1996, 1999) and capturing a pair of the Conference USA Tournament titles (2009, 2011). The Knights earned the first at-large bid in program history in a record-breaking 2018-19 season.
  • The Knights are a 10 seed, the highest seed UCF has ever had at the NCAA Tournament. The Black and Gold have now earned both of their highest seeds under head coach Katie Abrahamson-Henderson after earning a 12 seed in 2019.


  • In typical UCF fashion during the Coach ABE era, the Knights are among the best in the country defensively.
  • In each of her five seasons at the helm, UCF has held its opponents under 57 points per game. The Knights are holding opponents to 49.9 points per game, not only the best mark under Coach ABE, but also in program history.
  • UCF leads the nation in scoring defense. 11 of the Knights' 20 opponents have been held below 50 points, with four (Virginia, Temple and Houston twice) held under 40.
  • The Knights have held five teams to their season lows this season - Virginia, Houston, Temple, Cincinnati and South Florida.
  • The Black and Gold are also holding their opponents to a 33.3 field goal percentage this season, which ranks sixth in the country.
  • In each game this season, UCF has forced its opponent into double-digit turnovers, and ranks 36th nationally in turnovers forced (19.15).


  • A pair of Knights average double figures, led by Courtajia Sanders' 10.5 points per game.
  • Diamond Battles leads the Knights with 3.8 assists and 2.5 steals per game and is the second-leading scorer at 10.3 points per contest.
  • Masseny Kaba paces the Knights on the glass with 6.0 rebounds per game.
  • Sanders was named an American Athletic Conference second team honoree while Brittney Smith garnered third team honors.
  • Alisha Lewis was named Co-Sixth Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year.
  • Battles and Kaba were named to The American All-Tournament Team.

Northwestern enters the NCAA Tournament with a 15-8 overall record. The Wildcats are makingtheir eighth NCAA Tournament appearance in program history and first since 2014-15. The Wildcats were expected to be a high seed in the 2020 NCAA Tournament before it was canceled due to COVID-19. 
Monday will be the first meeting between UCF and Northwestern in women's basketball.
The Wildcats led the nation in turnover margin at 9.61. Veronica Burton is a two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and was named All-Big Ten First Team. She leads the country with 4.0 steals per game and ranks 11th nationally in made free throws at 127. Lindsey Pulliam earned All-Big Ten second team honors and is one of three Wildcats to earn four All-Big Ten honors in four seasons.
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