INDIANAPOLIS - "March Madness" returns to LSU as the Pete Maravich Assembly Center has been selected as a host site for the 2012 NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament First and Second Rounds.
Games will be played at the Maravich Center on either March 17 and 19, 2012 or March 18 and 20, 2012. The NCAA Tournament returns to Baton Rouge for the first time since the 2009 postseason.
"Our goal is to be there in March," said first-year LSU head coach Nikki Caldwell. "That process isn't something that happens overnight. It starts by what we are doing now this offseason and how hard we work into the fall. The opportunity to host NCAA Tournament games in our own venue is great for our fans, the University and the city of Baton Rouge. LSU has a storied NCAA postseason tradition and we want the entire community to come out and support women's basketball."
Ticket details to the first and second rounds will be released soon.
LSU and the Maravich Center are among 16 sites selected to host in 2012. Other first and second round host sites for the 2012 NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament include: Ames, Iowa; Bowling Green, Ohio; Bridgeport, Conn.; Chapel Hill, N.C.; Chicago, Ill.; College Park, Md.; College Station, Texas; Little Rock, Ark.; Nashville, Tenn.; Norfolk, Va.; Norman, Okla.; Notre Dame, Ind.; Spokane, Wash.; Tallahassee, Fla.; and West Lafayette, Ind..
The four selected regional sites are Des Moines, Iowa; Fresno, Calif.; Kingston, R.I.; and Raleigh, N.C. The 2012 NCAA Women's Final Four will be played at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colo.
Since the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament was expanded to its current 64-team format, LSU has played host to first-and-second round games six times, most recently in 2009 when the Lady Tigers defeated Green Bay before losing to eventual Final Four participant Louisville in the second round.
LSU also served as a host site for first-and-second round games in 1997, 1999, 2000, 2004 and 2008. The Lady Tigers are 13-2 all-time in NCAA Tournament games played in Baton Rouge. That record dates back to LSU's first hosting opportunity in 1984. LSU owns a perfect 6-0 record all-time in NCAA Tournament First Round games in the Maravich Center.