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Women's Basketball Update: P'cats trying to bust onto the bracket

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The P'cats have won three in a row and are entering the bracketology discussion for the second straight year.

USA TODAY Sports

The Villanova women's basketball team is currently riding a three-game winning streak, with dominant wins over Xavier, Georgetown, and Creighton, as they bring their record to 16-5 and 6-4 in the Big East.

Most recently, they beat a previously 7-2 in-conference team in Creighton, earning a home-and-home split in the two games. They nearly pulled off another win in Omaha back in December but fell just short.

Earlier in January, they held Xavier to just 32 points, an astounding feat even for a defensive-minded team, and knocked off Georgetown in the nation's capital 59-49. They've only allowed 60 or more points twice in the last 9 games, and rank in the top 20 in points allowed in the NCAA.

They're currently ranked 34th in RPI, have only one bad loss, and continue to lead the entire nation by committing the fewest turnovers per game. They lead that stat by more than a full 2 TOs, and are the only team in the country committing single-digit turnovers per game.

On a more intriguing note, the Wildcats were projected to hiccup a bit after graduating so much of their offense last year. Shooting guard Rachel Roberts and forward Laura Sweeney each contributed double-digit point totals on a nightly basis and were part of a senior-laden Villanova squad that reached the NCAA Tournament last year.

As a 9 seed, the Wildcats traveled to Stanford, California to take on the Michigan Wolverines. The 'Cats fell 60-52 in a game that was never out of reach, but it was nevertheless considered a successful season as they finished 21-10 overall and 9-7 in a conference that featured powerhouses UConn and Notre Dame.

This year, ESPNW Bracketologist Charlie Creme currently has Villanova as one of the "First Four Out". If the field were expanded to 68, the Wildcats would be in a First Four game at Dayton. I looked online and only found one other bracketology site, which gave the Wildcats a 10 seed and the 5th-to-last spot.

It may take one more marquee win to separate themselves from the other bubble teams, or no more bad losses. But this is a team closing in on 20 wins for the 2nd straight season and that in itself is an accomplishment.