SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – A one-day doubleheader event featuring four elite women’s college basketball teams that will be televised on ESPN Networks is coming to the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
The Invitational at the Sanford Pentagon includes Arizona vs. Louisville and South Carolina vs. South Dakota. It will take place on November 12. Tickets will go on sale September 30 at 10:00 am. Please contact Troy Giegling at 605-312-7902 or email@example.com regarding sponsorships of the event.
All four teams qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 2021 with Arizona and South Carolina reaching the Final Four. ESPN’s Way-Too-Early Top 25 pre-season rankings for the 2021-22 season has South Carolina at No. 2, Louisville at No. 6 and South Dakota at No. 25.
“These are not just four great teams – this doubleheader could essentially be a preview of the programs that will make a deep run in the 2022 NCAA Tournament,” said Jesse Smith, vice president of operations at the Sanford Sports Complex. “We’re thrilled to see these incredible programs play on Heritage Court and build on our resume of hosting the most talented teams and players in the country.”
South Carolina returns to the Pentagon after winning the Bad Boy Mowers Women’s Crossover Classic in 2020. The Gamecocks defeated South Dakota and Gonzaga to begin the season on their way to the school’s third Final Four berth. Head coach Dawn Staley will be coaching Team USA in the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
“We are thrilled to return to the Sanford Pentagon,” said Staley. “With a field of Top 25 opponents, including national semi-finalist Arizona, it’s a unique mix of competition and exposure that will help our maturity process of a team mixed with 11 returners and five newcomers.”
South Dakota makes its ninth appearance at the Sanford Pentagon. Last season, the Coyotes competed against South Carolina and Gonzaga in the Crossover Classic to begin their year. USD went on to win the Summit League Tournament at the Pentagon, earning a berth in the NCAA Tournament.
“We are so excited to be one of the four programs featured in this nationally televised double header,” said South Dakota head coach Dawn Plitzuweit. “We had the privilege of playing in a tournament hosted by Complete Sports Management and the Sanford Pentagon last season, and it was a first-class experience down to the very last detail! For us to get to take on one of most elite teams in the country and to get to do so in our home state of South Dakota will not only be great for Coyote Nation but also a great early season measuring stick for our team.”
Louisville is coming off an Elite Eight season, the sixth in program history. South Dakota All-State selection, Sydni Schetnan of Sioux Falls Washington, has signed to play for the Cardinals.
“We are extremely excited to tip off our season at the 2021 Sanford Pentagon Women’s Basketball Double Header,” said Louisville head coach Jeff Walz. “To be able to compete against a tremendous Arizona team, as well as be a part of such a prestigious showcase for women’s basketball, is an incredible opportunity for our team and program. As each month passes, we can hope that the best fans in the country, Card Nation, will also be able to be in attendance!”
Arizona is coming off a national championship game appearance, the first in program history. Head coach Adia Barnes led the Wildcats to a 21-6 record in the 2020-21 season. Bismarck, North Dakota native, Lauren Ware, plays for Arizona.
“The Invitational at the Sanford Pentagon is a great early season event to test our program against Louisville, one of the top programs in the country,” said Arizona head coach Adia Barnes. “For the fans to be able to see South Carolina, Louisville, South Dakota and Arizona in one location is an amazing opportunity and we are thrilled to participate. This is also a unique opportunity to get Lauren Ware home and continue to showcase our sport in a highly competitive environment.”
|Nov. 21, 2013||Drake 89, South Dakota 81 (OT)|
|Nov. 11, 2016||South Dakota 75, SIU-Edwardsville 65|
|Nov. 21, 2018||South Dakota 73, Wichita State 64|
|Nov. 15, 2019||South Dakota State 77, Dakota Wesleyan 46|
|Nov. 28, 2020||No. 1 South Carolina 81, South Dakota 71|
|Nov. 29, 2020||No. 1 South Carolina 79, No. 21 Gonzaga 72|
|Nov. 30, 2020||No. 21 Gonzaga 54, South Dakota 50|
|March 6, 2021||Omaha 52, No. 21 South Dakota State 40|
|March 6, 2021||South Dakota 89, Oral Roberts 66|
|March 7, 2021||Western Illinois 60, Kansas City 59|
|March 7, 2021||North Dakota State 79, Denver 67|
|March 8, 2021||Omaha 69, Western Illinois 55|
|March 8, 2021||South Dakota 81, North Dakota State 55|
|March 9, 2021||South Dakota 66, Omaha 43|
|Nov. 12, 2021||South Carolina vs. South Dakota|
|Nov. 12, 2021||Arizona vs. Louisville|