The women's NCAA Tournament field, which was announced on Monday, looks awfully familiar. The top four seeds for this year's 64-team tournament are exactly the same as the four No. 1 seeds last year. It's the first time all four top seeds were the same in consecutive seasons. Defending national champion Baylor (32-1) is the No. 1 overall seed again and is the top seed in the Oklahoma City Region. Connecticut (29-4) is the No. 1 seed in the Norfolk Region, Notre Dame (31-1) is the top seed in the Bridgeport, Conn., and Stanford (31-2) is the No. 1 seed in the Spokane, Wash., Region. Those four teams lived up to their seeding last year when they all reached the Final Four. Stanford will be bidding for its sixth straight trip to the Final Four and is the only team to knock off Baylor this season. To get to the Final Four in New Orleans this season, the Cardinal may have to beat Pac-12 rival Cal again. The Bears are seeded No. 2 in the Spokane region. The winner of that region would play the winner of the Bridgeport Region in the national semifinals, to be played April 7. Kentucky is the No. 2 seed in that region behind UConn. Duke is the No. 2 seed in the Norfolk Region behind Notre Dame, and the winner of that region probably would face Baylor in the national semifinals. The No. 1-ranked Lady Bears have won 30 straight games, including road victories over UConn and Notre Dame. The No. 2 seed in the Oklahoma City Region is Tennessee. The Lady Bears are led by the reigning national player of the year Brittney Griner, who is likely to win the award again this season. They open the defense of their title on Saturday against Prairie View. The championship game is April 9.
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