ASTON, Pa. (CBS) – For the second straight season, the Neumann University women’s basketball team is readying for an NCAA Tournament appearance.

After winning the Colonial States Athletic Conference title, the Knights earned an automatic bid to the tourney — they will open play on Friday night with a first round match-up against Lebanon Valley College.

Knights’ head coach Frank Farnese says it’s a tough match-up.

“They are a very good regional team and they are known nationally now, and we’ve got our hands full,” Farnese admits.  “They are very good, but I think we match up well, and I think it will be a great contest.”

Hear Matt Leon’s full interview with Frank Farnese in this CBS Philly SportsPod…

Lebanon Valley is 25-2 heading into the tournament.  Neumann is 20-7, but Farnese says they are still standing.

“We have good balanced scoring led by Katie Young.  Katie Young has done a great job this year, averaging a double-double every game. And a great point guard in Krista DiRomualdo, who is controlling and conducting the offense,” the coach says.

A senior forward, Young was named the CSAC Player of the Year.  She averages 16.5 points per game and 13 rebounds a contest.  DiRomualdo, also a senior, averages 10.2 points a game and leads the team with 81 assists.

Last season the Knights lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to Messiah.

Friday’s winner plays the winner of Randolph-Macon and Bridgewater State on Saturday.

Reported by Matt Leon, KYW Newsradio 1060.

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