SAN ANTONIO — Fifteen home contests, three tournaments and a full slate of 16 Conference USA games highlight the 2013-14 women’s basketball schedule that was released by head coach Lubomyr Lichonczak on Thursday.
“Our team is excited to take on all of the challenges that this schedule will bring,” said Lichonczak, who was promoted to head coach on Aug. 28 after spending the previous 11 seasons on UTSA's coaching staff. “We will face some stiff competition in non-conference play, which includes three tournaments, and our hope is that those games will prepare us for the experience that we'll see in Conference USA. I have no doubts that our players will grow and mature throughout the season against this tough schedule.”
The Roadrunners will face 10 postseason teams from a year ago and play 15 contests against teams that ranked in the top 150 of the last Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) rankings. Furthermore, UTSA will take on eight squads that finished the 2012-13 campaign with an RPI in the top 100, including a matchup with Baylor, which topped the final rankings, on Nov. 23.
UTSA will open the season on Nov. 1 when they host East Central in the team’s lone exhibition game.
The regular season tips off on Nov. 10 at Texas, as the Birds will play four of their first six contests on the road. Former conference mates Lamar (Nov. 14) and UT Arlington (Nov. 17) will open the home slate before UTSA returns to the road for games against Northwestern State (Nov. 21), Savannah State (Nov. 22) and Baylor (Nov. 23) as part of the Athletes in Action Classic in Waco.
The Roadrunners will face Northern Iowa (Nov. 29) and Norfolk State (Nov. 30) in the annual UTSA Thanksgiving Classic and open the month of December with a road outing against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (Dec. 5).
Abilene Christian will make its first appearance at the Convocation Center on Dec. 8 and the team then will travel to San Marcos for a matchup with I-35 rival Texas State two weeks later.
UTSA will close out the calendar year and the non-conference slate by hosting games against North Dakota State (Dec. 28) and New Mexico State (Dec. 29) at the UTSA Holiday Classic.
The Roadrunners will open their inaugural Conference USA campaign at home against Tulsa, which claimed an NCAA Tournament bid last season by winning the league tournament, on Jan. 8. Meanwhile, the first conference road test will come three days later at Southern Miss (Jan. 11).
Following a home game against Charlotte on Jan. 15, UTSA will again take to the road for tilts against fellow league newcomers North Texas (Jan. 18) and Middle Tennessee (Jan. 22).
UTSA will close the month of January at home with the first of two matchups against UTEP (Jan. 25), while other home dates include games against FIU (Feb. 5), Tulane (Feb. 8), East Carolina (Feb. 20), Old Dominion (Feb. 22) and Florida Atlantic (March 1).
Meanwhile, contests at Louisiana Tech (Feb. 1), UAB (Feb. 12), Rice (Feb. 15), UTEP (Feb. 26) and Marshall (March 5) conclude the road slate.
All 16 league members will participate in the C-USA Tournament, which is scheduled to run from March 11-15 at the Don Haskins Center in El Paso.