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Despite having to open away from the Huntsman Center, the Utah women's basketball team survived its first-round WNIT game last week. The Utes' reward is a home date, but against a talented San Diego group that returns two seniors from last year's run to the WNIT Final Four.
The Utes (19-13) and Toreros (22-9) tip off Monday at 7 p.m.
"Anytime you get to play at home, you're obviously more comfortable," Utah coach Anthony Levrets said. "But in the postseason, especially when you get to this point, you're playing a really good team. ... It's going to be a challenge Monday."
San Diego, 47-18 the last two seasons, finished second in the West Coast Conference and lost to Gonzaga in the league's tournament championship game.
Both teams depend on their inside games. The Toreros only took an average of 7.1 3-point shots a game, compared with the Utes' average of nearly 16.
The Utes will rely on its trio of double-figure scorers, including forward and All-Pac-12 selection Michelle Plouffe. Utah, 8-3 in its last 11 games, has also depended on its defense, holding opponents to 36 percent shooting during the season.
San Diego At Utah
P At Huntsman Center
Tipoff • Monday, 7 p.m.
TV • none
Radio • 700 AM
Records • USD 22-9, Utah 19-13
Series history • Utah, 2-0
Last meeting • Utah 76-38 (Jan. 5, 1989)
About the Toreros • San Diego advanced to the second round of the WNIT with a 61-49 victory against Hawaii. ... Amy Kane averages 16 points. ... San Diego outrebounds opponents by more than 6 a game.
About the Utes • Utah advanced to the second round by winning at Long Beach State. ... Forward Michelle Plouffe was selected All-Pac-12 with 16.7 points and 8.3 rebounds a game. ... Taryn Wicijowski and Iwalani Rodrigues combine for 26 points and 11 rebounds.