ETSU women’s basketball announces 2023-24 schedule
Published 8:47 am Friday, August 25, 2023
JOHNSON CITY – The first year of the Coach Mock era definitely did not disappoint. Now it’s time to see what’s in store for year two!
On Thursday, ETSU women’s basketball head coach Brenda Mock announced the Buccaneers’ 2023-24 schedule, featuring 15 home contests, games at Kentucky and Clemson, and a Thanksgiving Tournament in Miami.
“We are really excited about the balance of our schedule this year, said Coach Mock. “I’d like to thank assistant coach Joe Silvestri for his hard work and collaboration in securing competitive non-conference games that will prepare us for Southern Conference play and provide some great experiences for our young ladies.
“Naturally, we are striving to build upon what we did last year, and we won a lot of games, so ultimately scheduling is not just about continuing to win. It is also about mentally and physically preparing to perform consistently at a high level in our 14 non-conference games at the end of the season. If we are disciplined, this is where we can make the biggest jump with our squad this year. We had a great summer with our players, and I truly appreciate the intentionality in their approach to this season and what they want to accomplish. We are excited to get started next week!”
The Bucs, who are coming off a historic season where they won a program-record 25 games, open the 2023-24 campaign where they ended last season – in Lexington, Ky. The Blue & Gold will take on the Kentucky Wildcats on Nov. 7.
A year ago, the Blue & Gold played in the Women’s Basketball Invitational at Transylvania University where ETSU won two of its three games in the postseason tournament en route to finishing third in the WBI. With the two wins in the WBI, the Bucs completed one of the seven best turnarounds in NCAA Division I women’s basketball history – featuring a 19-win improvement from 2021-22 to 2022-23.
BUCS IN BROOKS
After opening the season on the road, ETSU heads back to Johnson City for its home opener when the Bucs bring Lafayette to Brooks Gym for a Saturday matinee as the teams tip off at Noon.
THANKSGIVING IN MIAMI
Following back-to-back road games at Radford (Nov. 15) and Presbyterian (Nov. 19), ETSU heads to the beach for the Miami Thanksgiving Tournament. The Bucs will open up with Norfolk State on Nov. 24, while playing either Colgate or Miami on Nov. 26.
BACK AT HOME
Playing five of its first six games away from home, ETSU will enjoy nearly a three-week stretch where six of its seven games will be played in Johnson City, starting with Lipscomb to close out the month of November. Lipscomb won 20 games a year ago and finished third in the ASUN with a 13-5 record. From there, the Bucs open December on the road at Morehead State (Dec. 3), but the Blue & Gold will then play five consecutive games at home with two of those contests featuring doubleheaders inside Freedom Hall.
The five straight home games highlight teams from the Carolinas beginning with Charleston Southern on Dec. 6. The first game inside Freedom Hall comes four days later when ETSU hosts Lees-McRae on Dec. 10, followed by back-to-back games inside Brooks Gym against UNC Asheville (Dec. 14) and Campbell (Dec. 17). The other game inside Freedom Hall brings Gardner-Webb to town on Dec. 20. Gardner-Webb reached the NCAA Tournament last season after going 29-5 overall and a perfect 18-0 in the Big South.
FINAL NON-CONFERENCE GAMES
ETSU’s last two non-conference games will be against teams from the Palmetto State as the Bucs play at Clemson on Dec. 22 and wrap up 2023 against Coker University at home on Dec. 30. Clemson reached the WNIT Super 16 last season before falling to Florida.
LET SOCON PLAY BEGIN
After an 11-day break between games, the Blue & Gold open conference play at home when ETSU hosts Samford (Jan. 11) and Mercer (Jan. 13).
SOCON ROAD OPENER
Following a stretch where the Bucs play nine of 11 at home, ETSU hits the road for the first time in conference play when they take on reigning SoCon Tournament champion Chattanooga on Jan. 20. The trip to the Scenic City marks the first of three on the road as the Bucs then play at Western Carolina (Jan. 25) and at UNCG (Jan. 27).
HOME HEAVY IN EARLY FEBRUARY
ETSU opens the month of February playing five of its first seven in Johnson City, starting on Feb. 1 when Furman visits Brooks Gym. Once again, the Bucs will play another Freedom Hall doubleheader on Feb. 3 when the women host Wofford – who won the regular season conference title last season – and the men take on The Citadel.
Sandwiched between the home games is the Mercer-Samford trip, which sends the Blue & Gold to Macon, Ga. on Feb. 8 and Birmingham on Feb. 10.
The Bucs’ final three home games of the regular season feature Chattanooga (Feb. 17), UNCG (Feb. 22) and Western Carolina (Feb. 24).
FINAL TWO IN SOUTH CAROLINA
The final two regular season contests feature a game at Wofford on Leap Day and the finale pins the ETSU against Furman on March 2.
SOCON TOURNEY TIME
The league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament will be up for grabs in Harrah’s Cherokee Center Asheville, beginning March 7. The conference semifinals will be played March 8, followed by the championship game on Sunday, March 10.
Fans wanting to purchase season tickets for 2023-24 women’s basketball can do so by calling the ETSU Ticket Office at 423-439-3878 or by visiting ETSUTickets.com.