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Dragons Return to WNIT, Traveling to Florida Gulf Coast For Opening Round

PHILADELPHIA, March 17, 2011

Drexel Women's Basketball has made the postseason for a third straight season and returns to the Women's National Invitation Tournament for the second year in a row. The Dragons (19-11) will travel to Fort Myers, Fla. to challenge the Eagles of Florida Gulf Coast on Friday in the opening round of the tournament. The Eagles (27-3, 17-3 Atlantic Sun) are ranked among the CollegeInsider.com's Mid-Major top 10 and have the third longest homecourt winning streak in the nation, 41 games, third only to UConn and Stanford.

The Eagles are in a reclassification period while waiting to become a full member of the Atlantic Sun Conference. They were the league's regular-season champion this year, led by Coach of the Year Karl Smesko, but were inelegible for the conference tournament. The team features a dynamic scoring attack led by All-Conference selections Shannon Murphy and Sarah Hansen.

Florida Gulf Coast set an NCAA single-game high this season by hoisting 55 three-pointers in a conference game against Mercer this season. The Eagles have six players on the roster with 25 or more three-pointers this season, led by Kelcey Jacobsen's 91, and lead the NCAA with 10.8 threes per game. Florida Gulf Coast won the Hilton Garden Inn Classic, a tournament it hosted from March 3-6 in lieu of playing in its conference tournament.

The Dragons are coming off a tough 63-51 loss to UNC Wilmington in the quarterfinals of the CAA Tournament, a defeat that snapped a four-game winning streak for Drexel. Kamile Nacickaite has been playing some of her best basketball of the season down the stretch. She scored a game-high 22 points against the Seahawks on 8-for-14 shooting and a 4-for-6 performance from behind the three-point arc.

Drexel made its first apperance in the WNIT after last season. The Dragons hosted East Carolina at the DAC in a contest that ended in an overtime loss to the Lady Pirates.

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News media contact:
Mike Tuberosa, assistant athletic director, communications
215-895-1591 or mike.tuberosa@drexel.edu