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Nuggets begin title defense against Fisk at noon Thursday
February 25, 2013

     NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana's women's basketball team, in search of a fourth consecutive Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Tournament championship, will play Fisk at noon Thursday in the opening round at Barton Coliseum in Little Rock, Ark.
     The Gold Nuggets (24-4) are seeded first in the tournament after winning the regular-season championship by one game over Talladega and SUNO. Fisk (8-20) tied for seventh place with Edward Waters in the regular season but is seeded eighth after losing a tiebreaker.
     Xavier closed the regular season with 12 consecutive victories, including a 63-41 decision against Fisk on Jan. 21 at XU's new Convocation Center and 68-45 against Fisk in Nashville, Tenn., on Feb. 11. The Gold Nuggets' last loss was 63-56 at home to SUNO on Jan. 14, but Xavier made amends with a 72-67 victory at SUNO on Feb. 16.
     Xavier defeated Fisk 73-49 in the tournament's opening round at Jacksonville, Fla., a year ago. Xavier is 5-0 all-time against the Lady Bulldogs.
     Philander Smith will use two sites — the other is Mims Gym on its campus — to play host to all the women's and men's first-round games on Thursday. The women's and the men's top two seeds will play at Barton Coliseum, and for Xavier fans that results in a doubleaheader. After the Nuggets' game Thursday, Xavier's top-seeded men will play Dillard at Barton at 2:30 p.m.
     Barton Coliseum will be the site of Friday's semifinals and Saturday's championship games. The Xavier-Fisk winner will play fourth-seeded Tougaloo or fifth-seeded Philander Smith in the semifinals at noon Friday. The championship game will start at 2 p.m. Saturday, followed by the men's final at 4:30.
     The Gold Nuggets defeated Talladega 58-50 in the GCAC Tournament final a year ago.
     The women's tournament winner will receive the GCAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Division I National Championship, which will begin March 13 at Frankfort Convention Center in Frankfort, Ky. Xavier qualified for the national tournament 16 times in the past 18 seasons and reached the second round in 2011 and 2012. The Gold Nuggets never have reached the national quarterfinals. Xavier is ranked 10th nationally with a new top 25 to be announced by late Tuesday afternoon.
     The tournament schedule:

     First Round — Thursday, Feb. 28
     #4 Tougaloo vs. #5 Philander Smith, noon at Mims Gym
     #1 Xavier vs. #8 Fisk, noon at Barton Coliseum
     #3 SUNO vs. #6 Dillard, 5 p.m. at Mims Gym
     #2 Talladega vs. #7 Edward Waters, 5 p.m. at Barton Coliseum

     Semifinals — Friday, March 1
     At Barton Coliseum
     Tougaloo-Philander Smith winner vs. Xavier-Fisk winner, noon
     SUNO-Dillard winner vs. Talladega-Edward Waters winner, 5 p.m.

     Championship — Saturday, March 2
     At Barton Coliseum
     Semifinal winners, 2 p.m.


Gulf Coast Athletic Conference

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics
The Xavier Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets compete in Division I of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) as a member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Xavier fields men's teams in basketball, cross country, tennis and track and field and women's teams in basketball, cross country, tennis, track and field and volleyball.

Department of Intercollegiate Athletics
Xavier University of Louisiana
1 Drexel Drive
Campus Box 92
New Orleans, LA 70125
(504) 520-7329 phone
(504) 520-7934 fax

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