2019 NCAA TOURNAMENT

Iowa women's basketball: Get to know NCAA first-round opponent Mercer

Bears gave No. 4-seed Georgia a push in 2018 NCAA Tournament

Mercer Bears
Mercer Bears

A No. 15-seed has never won a game in the NCAA women’s basketball tournament. The Mercer Bears will try to become the first when they take on No. 2-seed Iowa at 1 p.m. Friday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Does Mercer have what it takes to pull the upset? Here are a few things to know about the Bears.

Location: Macon, Ga.

Enrollment: 8,756 total; 4,803 undergrad

Record: 25-7 (14-0, Southern Conference champion)

Streak: Won 17

Rankings: NR coaches poll, No. 132 RPI

Games vs. RPI Top 100 Opponents: No. 15 Central Florida (L 42-76), No. 21 Florida State (L 56-57), No. 68 Georgia (L 60-67)

Best win: No. 105 Charlotte (W 57-40)

Worst losses: No. 233 Jacksonville (L 66-71), No. 234 Memphis (L 53-59), No. 253 Columbia (L 68-72)

NCAA bid: Automatic, beat Furman 66-63 in Southern Conference tournament championship game

Coach: Susie Gardner (9th season at Mercer, 169-117; 20th season overall, 345-264)

NCAA history: 2018, Lost 68-63 to No. 4-seed Georgia in first round

Series vs. Iowa: First ever meeting

Projected starters

0 Keke Calloway, 5-9, sr., G, Forsyth, Ga. (17.9 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 3.7 apg)

2 Amanda Thompson, 5-10, sr., F, Hayesville, N.C. (13.1 ppg, 10.7 rpg, 2.8 apg, 2.2 spg)

11 Linnea Rosendal, 6-1, sr., G, Stockholm, Sweden (9.0 ppg, 38.2 3FG%)

21 Shannon Titus, 5-11, so., G/F, Johns Creek, Ga. (12.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.8 spg, 1.4 bpg)

34 Rachel Selph, 6-3, sr., C, Eastman, Ga. (8.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg)

Top team stats

Fewest turnovers: 369, No. 7 in nation (11.3 per game)

Assist/turnover ratio: 1.31, No. 15

Turnover margin: 3.81, No. 33

Field goal percentage: 43.7, No. 41

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