The University of St. Thomas will host the NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball Sectional Tournament Friday and Saturday, March 9-10, in Schoenecker Arena. Friday’s games are at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Saturday’s championship game will begin at 7 p.m.

Free student tickets for Friday night’s games will be given to the first 300 UST students to present their student ID at the UST Box Office. One ticket will be given per student with ID. These free tickets will be available only at the Box Office starting Wednesday, March 7, through noon Friday, March 9, while supplies last.

The ticket giveaway is sponsored by UST’s Center for Student Leadership Office and the Dean of Student Life Office.

Otherwise, tickets are $5 for adults and $4 for students per day. There’s no advanced sale and no reserved seating in Schoenecker Arena, which has a capacity of 2,200. Gates open at 5 p.m. Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday.

Friday’s 6 p.m. game pits the Tommies against No. 1-rated Washington University of St. Louis, Mo.

The Tommies ended a 23-game home-court winning streak by No. 4-rated George Fox University Saturday night with a 64-52 victory in their NCAA Division III second-round game in Newberg, Ore.

The win allowed 10th-ranked St. Thomas (25-3) to reach the NCAA round of 16 for the sixth time in seven seasons. The Tommies have the best record in NCAA Division III since 1990 (300-42, .880) and have the longest streak of consecutive NCAA Division III women’s basketball playoff appearances (15 seasons).

The Washington University Bears have won three consecutive Division III championships. The Bears beat No. 8 University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire 87-67 on Saturday.

The 8 p.m. game is between teams from No. 21 Wartburg College (25-4), Waverly, Iowa, and Fontbonne College (21-6) of St. Louis, Mo. Wartburg won home NCAA games over Chapman (by eight) and Nebraska Wesleyan (by 14). Fontbonne, unranked, has won 17 in a row, including Saturday’s 69-56 road upset of No. 6 Millikin.

Friday’s winners play at 7 p.m. Saturday for a berth in the March 16-17 Final Four in Danbury, Conn.

For more information, call the St. Thomas Sports Information Office, (651) 962-5903.

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