LAS VEGAS (ABC4 Sports) – The Southern Utah Thunderbirds women’s basketball team is headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time ever.

After defeating Cal Baptist Saturday night to win the WAC Tournament, 82-73, SUU earned a 14-seed and will face 3rd-seeded Notre Dame Friday in South Bend, Indiana.

Cherita Daugherty earned Western Athletic Conference Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors after a career-defining performance of 26 points and eight rebounds. Southern Utah had a high-octane offensive attack with all five of its starters finishing with double digits in scoring. 

Daugherty came up big right from the opening tip, leading the team with 26 points on a remarkable 61 percent shooting from the field while amassing eight rebounds, three assists, and one block. Daylani Ballena added 14 points, and five rebounds while dishing out a game-high seven assists.

Lizzy Williamson and Tomekia Whitman recorded crucial double-doubles. Williamson posted 12 points, 13 rebounds, and three stifling blocks. Whitman turned in a gritty performance, scoring 12 points and 11 rebounds. Megan Jensen shot a perfect 5-5 from the field, finishing with 12 points and five rebounds.  

If Southern Utah can get past Notre Dame, the T-Birds would face the winner of the Creighton vs. Illinois/Mississippi State game on Sunday.