Mt. Juliet's Lady Bears will take a record of 29-1 and a 24-game winning streak into this afternoon's opening game with Jefferson County (22-11) in the TSSAA Class AAA state tournament at MTSU's Murphy Center.
Admission is $10 per person with tickets available at the Murphy Center box office.
The winner of Wednesday's quarterfinal contest will move on to play winner of the Blackman (33-1) and Houston (26-7) game in the semifinals Friday at 11:30 a.m.
The other bracket finds Morristown West (33-3) playing Rossview (27-3) and Bradley Central (26-5) matched up with Ridgeway (28-3).
“I got a few scouting reports and started looking at ‘em on Sunday,” said Mt. Juliet head coach Chris Fryer. “I know you can’t put ‘em on the free throw line. They’re drivers -- they love to penetrate and they shoot an incredible percentage on their free throws.
“If you send ‘em to the line 25 times, they’ll hit 25. Their post player is about 5-9, so they’re not real big, but they can spread the floor on you.
“They might have some trouble guarding us inside, but I think we’ll have problems chasing them around when they go five out to spread us out.”
Fryer went on to say the combination of his team playing three six-footers combined with the relative small size of the Lady Patriots made for matchup problems -- both ways.
“They can try to offset our size by maybe playing some zone against us, but we do what we do,” Fryer said. “On the other hand, we can’t let them get the corner turned and start driving the ball to the hole.”
Mt. Juliet will be making the program’s 14th trip to the TSSAA state tournament since winning for the first time in 1977. Mt. Juliet also won the 1983 and 2005 titles.
Fryer will be taking the Lady Bears to the state for the seventh time in his coaching tenure.