2023 Women's ACC Tournament Preview

2023 Women's ACC Tournament Preview
by Victor Olorunfemi
October 28, 2023

The ACC Tournament is here, and all eyes turn towards Florida State, who is chasing a 9th title in 11 years, off the back of a second straight regular season championship, an undefeated season, and a No. 1 national ranking. Challenging will be a host of elite teams looking to make this one for the ages.

Quarter-finals hosted by higher seed, semi-finals, and finals at UNC.

Home Safe: Florida State, North Carolina, Clemson, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh

The ACC will have four teams guaranteed an at-large bid regardless of how the conference tournament goes. Each has done well to occupy the top 25 consistently this season and reaps the rewards with comfort going into the post-season.

Win and In: Wake Forest

As the lone tournament team that must likely win the title to reach the NCAA tournament, Wake Forest will come out swinging. Defeating Clemson and Notre Dame to reach the final may be enough, but an automatic bid by way of a championship is the only way to be safe.

Hoping and Wishing: Duke

Duke has had an up-and-down season, and it may ultimately cost them with one win from their last eight. A failure to make the post-season also leaves their fate out of their hands as they now hope a long list of results across all the conference tournaments sees them still receive an at-large bid.

Firstround Preview:

No. 3 Clemson vs. No. 6 Wake Forest

This match will be the first time these two match up this season, making it a difficult game to project. What is an X-Factor for Clemson is an impressive 7-1-2 record at home, with that lone loss coming when it hosted undefeated Florida State. The X-Factor for Wake Forest is knowing it is the only team in attendance that has work to do to reach the NCAA Tournament, providing an unmatched hunger to survive and advance.

No. 4 North Carolina vs. No. 5 Pittsburgh

This has all the makings of an upset as undefeated North Carolina hosts a Pittsburgh team that lost three conference games. The UNC offense has sputtered at times this season, while Pittsburgh has shown a propensity to explode for goals in different moments.

Semifinals Preview:

No. 1 Florida State vs. North Carolina/Pittsburgh

Although undefeated, Florida State has reason to dread either team that makes it out of this game after needing a last-second goal to draw North Carolina and surviving a close 3-2 win versus Pittsburgh. But this Seminoles team has shown a propensity to fight through adversity, an important trait for any championship contender.

No. 2 Notre Dame vs. Clemson/Wake Forest

They say it is hard to beat a team twice in one week, so Notre Dame would likely hope to avoid Clemson in this matchup after defeating the Tigers 2-0 on October 26. Not that Wake Forest is a walk in the park either, considering the team has improved significantly since losing to Notre Dame in mid-September, with just one loss in nine games from then.

Final Notes

Related Topics: Atlantic Coast
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