The women’s Mountain West tournament gets underway Thursday Mar. 14 in Las Vegas, Nev. Eight teams will vie for the right and hope that the odds are in their favor to win the tourney and claim an automatic spot in the prestigious women’s NCAA Tournament. The winner gets the ultimate opportunity to be able to compete with the best teams in the country, be in front of a national audience on ESPN, and most importantly have the chance to win a coveted national championship.
Now with the tournament being in Vegas and Vegas being all about playing the odds, let’s play the odds of the teams competing in the conference tournament. The odds on favorite and the best bet to come away with the Mountain West tournament title would be the regular season Mountain West conference champions the San Diego State Aztecs. The lady Aztecs finished the season 24-5 and 15-1 in the conference. They won 15 straight games to close out the season and they have not lost a game since Jan 13th. They are led by the Mountain West women’s player of the year Chelsea Hopkins. The Aztecs biggest competition will come from Fresno State and Wyoming. Fresno State finished second in the conference with a 21-8 record and 13-3 in the conference. They defeated the Aztecs earlier in the season and were the last loss San Diego State suffered. Wyoming was third with a record of 23-6 and 12-4 in the Mountain West.
Those three teams are the clear favorites to win the tournament and advance to the national tournament. Moving onto the middle of the pack you have New Mexico, UNLV, and Colorado State. Both New Mexico and UNLV finished even in conference play with an 8-8 record while Colorado State finished at 7-9. Don’t discount these three teams as there have been years when the middle seeds have made noise and played well when it counts.
Now rounding out the rest of the league you have Boise State, Air Force and Nevada who finished 7th, 8th, and 9th respectively. There is nothing better in the world of sports than the underdog. There have been numerous underdogs in the history of sports. The Boise State women’s basketball team is an underdog going into the Mountain West tournament and they are ready to play their hearts out and shock the world and get into the mecca of women’s college basketball, the NCAA tournament. The Broncos finished the season with an overall record of 11-18 and a conference record of 4-12.
While this season didn’t go the way the Broncos had hoped, the women are looking to erase all those disappointments and play their best basketball when it counts the most. With everything to gain and nothing to lose, underdogs like the Boise State women’s basketball team can be quite dangerous and have great potential to make a run that could end with them realizing their dreams by hoisting that tournament trophy and punching their ticket to the NCAA Women’s Basketball tournament.
The Broncos will be led by their best player and second-team all Mountain West player Lauren Lendhardt. The Broncos have their first game Thursday against the second seeded Fresno State Bulldogs. Catch the game on the CBS Sports Network and Root as the Boise State women’s team advances to an improbable run.