NEWARK, DEL-After a disappointing run in the 2011-2012 postseason, the UNC women’s basketball team is ready to reclaim its position as a dominant force in the NCAA tournament.
Last year’s season ended early for UNC, after they fell to Georgia Tech in the ACC Tournament quarterfinal and failed to earn an NCAA tournament bid for the first time since 2001. But this year, the Heels not only made the cut—they took a respectable No. 3 seed.

UNC is set to open its tournament action against No. 14 seeded Albany, but the Great Danes could prove a tough match—they’re at 27-3 overall, compared to 28-6 for the Heels, and they’re coming off 19 straight wins. Albany also goes into the tournament with an America East Conference championship title, along with a perfect conference record at 16-0.

Senior guard Tierra Ruffin-Pratt is leading the Heels, with team high averages for both points and assists, at 15.4 and 4.5, respectively. Meanwhile, senior Krista Gross is dominating on the boards, at 8.5 rebounds per game. For the Great Danes, senior guard Lindsey Lowrie is averaging a team-high 11.6 points, and she scored 12 in Albany’s America East championship game against Hartford; sophomore center Megan Craig managed seven rebounds during that outing.

If the Heels win, they’ll play on Tuesday in the round of 32, taking on the winner of Sunday afternoon’s game between sixth-seeded Delaware and eleventh-seeded West Virginia.

Tipoff between UNC and Albany is set for Sunday afternoon on the University of Delware’s campus at 2:30, Eastern Time. Due to our coverage of the UNC men’s NCAA tournament, the game will not be broadcast on WCHL, but it will be available online; click here for to the live stream.