Iowa garners No. 4 seed at Big Ten Tournament

March 1, 2009

Big Ten Tournament bracket

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa women’s basketball team will be the No. 4 seed at the 2009 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament and will open against fifth-seeded Minnesota on Friday at approximately 7:15 p.m. (Iowa time) in Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

Tickets are still available. An all-session (10 games) ticket costs $65. Fans interested in sitting in the Iowa section can call the UI Ticket Office at 1-800-IA-HAWKS. Single-session tickets range from $12-$16 and can be purchased at all Ticketmaster outlets, including the Conseco Fieldhouse box office and

The Hawkeyes recorded an 86-79 victory at Northwestern today to finish the regular season with a 20-9 overall record and 13-5 mark in conference play. Iowa finished the regular season in a third-place tie with Purdue, who lost today at Michigan State, but the Hawkeyes lost the tiebreaker to the Boilermakers and will be seeded fourth. Purdue defeated Iowa twice during the regular season to win the head-to-head tiebreaker.

This marks the second-straight season that Iowa finished the regular season with a 20-9 overall record and 13-5 mark in Big Ten play.

Iowa has played Minnesota twice before at the Big Ten Tournament, winning both times. The Hawkeyes bounced the Golden Gophers, 57-44, in the 1995 first round and, 80-77, in the 2003 quarterfinals. This season the teams split during the regular season — Iowa won 74-57 on Jan. 11 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena and Minnesota won 64-58 on Feb. 8 at Williams Arena.

Ohio State (24-5, 15-3) earned the tournament top seed after defeating Penn State, 74-63, today in Columbus, Ohio. Michigan State (20-9, 13-5) is the No. 2 seed, while Purdue (20-9, 13-5) earned the third seed. The first five seeds earn first round byes. The first round of the tournament begins Thursday with No. 8 Penn State (11-17, 6-12) taking on No. 9 Illinois (9-20, 5-13), followed by No. 7 Wisconsin (16-13, 6-12) battling No. 10 Northwestern (7-22, 3-15) and No. 6 Indiana (18-9, 11-7) facing No. 11 Michigan (10-19, 3-15).

The Big Ten Network (HD) will televise all Big Ten Tournament games, with the exception of the championship game, which will be shown on ESPN2.

This year marks the fourth time that the Hawkeyes have garnered a No. 4 seed in the Big Ten Tournament. Iowa won the tournament as a No. 4 seed in 1997. The Hawkeyes beat Northwestern, Indiana and Illinois to earn the league’s automatic NCAA Tournament berth. Iowa lost to fifth-seeded Indiana, in overtime, in the 2002 quarterfinals and fell to Michigan State in the 2004 quarterfinals, as a fourth seed.

Iowa holds a 13-12 record in conference tournament contests. Last year, the Hawkeyes were the No. 2 seed and defeated No. 7 Michigan (58-37) in the quarterfinals before falling to third-seeded Purdue (80-73) in the semifinals.

UI head coach Lisa Bluder will hold a press conference Tuesday at 2 p.m. in the Press Room of Carver-Hawkeye Arena to discuss the upcoming conference tournament, Minnesota and the all-Big Ten selections that will be announced Monday evening.