Lady Bulldogs Head to SEC Tournament

STARKVILLE, Miss. - The 10th-ranked Mississippi State Lady Bulldogs finished the regular season with the best regular season record in women's basketball history of 22-6 and a 10-4 SEC mark. With two conference wins this past week over Georgia (76-71) and Auburn (65-56), the Lady Bulldogs finished out their regular season tied for third with Georgia coming into the SEC Tournament.

MSU earned a bye with its fourth place seeding, the first time in MSU history, and will therefore play the winner of the South Carolina/Mississippi game on Friday, March 7 at 6 p.m. to be televised on SEC-TV. Georgia took the third place seeding over MSU due to its win over South Carolina, while MSU lost to the Gamecocks.

Senior forward LaToya Thomas became the first Lady Bulldog to be named the 2003 SEC Player of the Year for her senior year performance. The three-time Kodak All-American has been named an AP SEC Player of the Year last year in 2002 but never an SEC Player of the Year. The Greenville-native leads the SEC in scoring for the fourth consecutive year with 25.6 ppg. Thomas was also named to the All-SEC First Team for her fourth straight year. The senior is looking to repeat the success of her freshman year team, which was the first MSU women's basketball team to advance to the finals of the SEC Tournament, falling to Tennessee, 70-67.

Sophomore guard Tan White tabbed All-SEC Second Team honors. White is fourth in the SEC with 17.9 ppg and second in steals with 3.5 pg. White was named to the All-SEC First Team and All-SEC Freshman Teams last year. The two players join 12 other Lady Bulldogs that have earned the honor.

MSU is 9-23 in SEC Tournament competition. The Lady Bulldogs have a 7-16 First Round record, advancing to the Second Round seven times (1-6), to the Semifinals once (1-0) and Finals once (0-1).

MSU leads the series versus the Gamecocks, 8-6. South Carolina has won the last three meetings. They won the meeting earlier this year 83-79, climbing out of an 18-point deficit. The two teams have not faced each other on neutral courts nor at any time during the SEC Tournaments.

UM leads the series against MSU, 53-11 but Mississippi State has won the last four meetings, including back-to-back season sweeps over the Lady Rebels. MSU is only 1-5 versus Mississippi when facing each other in the SEC Tournament.

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