South Orange, NJ - The selection days, Sunday for the men, Monday for women, take a competitive form of their own. There are varying levels. You have the automatics, the conference champions waiting to see what their seed is, opponent and where they are headed. There are those who did not win their conference, yet possess a strong resume’. Finally, the bubble teams. Elation at getting invited to the ‘big dance’. Those not on the board, it is the agonizing feeling of being left at the altar.
The Seton Hall women held their Selection Monday at Walsh Gymnasium. There was a good turnout of fans and followers. In attendance were the team, coaching staff, as well as the spirit groups, cheerleaders and Sapphire dance team. As regular season co-champions in the Big East and conference tournament runners up, Seton Hall was in the second category. Not an automatic bid, but virtually assured by sharing a conference title and owning that enviable resume’.
Even with the knowledge you are in, the selection process is like Christmas. The excitement of your draw in the tournament keeps everyone’s eyes glued to the screen. For Seton Hall l, the wait was short. The Pirates were paired against Rutgers at Gampel Pavilion on the UConn campus.
The mood at Walsh quickly altered. Anticipation bursting into to excitement and first hand assessment of the first round opponent. Throughout the evening, there was a universal feeling, that of accomplishment for an outstanding season. A season celebrated by the Pirates and their faithful on this special evening, Selection Monday.
Tony Bozzella meeting with the media after Seton Hall's selection:
Ka-Deidre Simmons tells of the excitement of facing Rutgers again:
After the selection has been revealed, the crowd is still enjoying the moment:
Tabatha Richardson-Smith in an interview:
Assistant coach Tiffany Jones-Smart (left) and director of basketball operations Marissa Flagg (right) get their turn to discuss the upcoming meeting with Rutgers:
Reyna Salvatore, former cheerleading captain and current Pirate Blue member, chats with assistant coach Lauren DeFalco before she heads to a coaches' meeting:
A father-daughter dance this year...Tony Bozzella and his daughter, Samantha, a redshirt freshman for the Pirates: