Oregon State will bring a height and rebounding edge into its matchup with Florida State on Sunday night. Ellie Mack and Taya Corosdale are each 6-foot-3 and lead an Oregon State team that is 11th nationally in defensive rebounds per game. The Beavers also have a pair of 6-9 reserves.
“They’re definitely a tall team,” FSU forward Savannah Wilkinson said. “They have a tall frontline but we have Valencia Myers (who is 6-3) and River Baldwin (6-5). I think we’ll be alright.”
The Seminoles will play Oregon State on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. in a first-round NCAA Tournament game (ESPN2).
FSU will also be playing its first game in about two weeks, following its loss to Syracuse in the ACC Tournament. The Seminoles arrived at the “controlled environment” of San Antonio on Wednesday to begin preparations, including daily COVID testing, and practice for Sunday night’s game.
What became a national story was the disparity in the food choices, gym facilities and players’ gift bags. Side-by-side comparison photos shared on social media further illustrated the concerns, with many players from FSU and other schools calling attention to the issue.
FSU interim head coach Brooke Wyckoff as well as players like Savannah Wilkinson and Morgan Jones expressed gratitude that games have been played through a pandemic this season. But they also found it was a chance to have a discussion about the continued push for gender equality.
“We all saw it and there’s a disparity there,” Wyckoff said. “I don’t think there were bad intentions behind it. There was going to be things that fell through the cracks. I feel for our players. when they see that image, it’s tough. … This is still a thing.”
Wyckoff said she was part of a call with coaches who expressed their concerns and in subsequent days there were photos shared by media of improvements to workout facilities.
Here’s a quick look at Sunday’s matchup:
Records: FSU 10-8, Oregon State 11-7
FSU’s potential starters: G Bianca Jackson (13.9 points, 3.6 assists), G Morgan Jones (13.3 points, 6.3 rebounds), G/F Kourtney Weber (11.8 points, 3.5 rebounds), F Valencia Myers (8.3 points, 5.8 rebounds), G/F Sammie Puisis (7.0 points, 4.6 rebounds).
Oregon State’s potential starters: Aleah Goodman (16.1 points, 3.1 rebounds, Taylor Jones (11.9 points, 9.1 rebounds), Sasha Goforth (11.7 points, 3.6 rebounds), Ellie Mack (7.2 points, 3.7 rebounds), Taya Corosdale (6.1 points, 4.4 rebounds)
Series: Tied 1-1. FSU won 66-53 in the 2017 Sweet 16.
Winner faces: No. 1 seed South Carolina is considered a tournament favorite and opens with Mercer.
ACC teams in NCAA Tournament
#1 NC State vs. #16 North Carolina A&T, Sunday, 4 p.m., ESPN
#5 Georgia Tech vs. #12 Stephen F Austin, Sunday, 4:30 p.m., ESPNU
#9 Florida State vs. #8 Oregon State, Sunday, 7:30 p.m., ESPN2
#10 North Carolina vs. #7 Alabama, Monday, noon, ESPN
#2 Louisville vs. #15 Marist, Monday, 8 p.m., ESPN
#9 Wake Forest vs. #8 Oklahoma State, Sunday, 1 p.m., ESPN2
#7 Virginia Tech vs. #10 Marquette, Sunday, noon, ESPNU
#8 Syracuse vs. #9 South Dakota State, Sunday, 5:30 p.m., ESPN2