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Tampa mayor proclaims April 8 as ‘USF Women’s Basketball Day’

Mayor Jane Castor recognized the Bulls for their achievements, including winning both the regular-season and AAC tournament titles. USF ATHLETICS PHOTO

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor proclaimed April 8 as “USF Women’s Basketball Day” to commemorate and give credit to the Bulls for winning their first-ever AAC tournament title, among other accomplishments.

A portion of the celebration will include Castor awarding the team with a proclamation at 4 p.m. in the brick courtyard between Old City Hall and the Tampa Municipal Office Building.

The 2020-21 season was one that saw the Bulls reach heights never before seen. Aside from the aforementioned conference championship, USF also won its first-ever regular-season title and took down then-No. 6 Mississippi State in early December, the highest ranked team the Bulls have ever defeated in the history of the program.

USF also made the NCAA Tournament for the seventh time and advanced to the Round of 32 for the fourth time in program history. The Bulls’ season ultimately ended after losing to the No. 1 seed in their region, NC State.

In addition to the team’s accomplishments, coach Jose Fernandez and various players earned awards for their work throughout the season. Fernandez was named the AAC Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year and was a finalist for the Naismith College Coach of the Year award, an honor given to the top-ranked coach in the nation, given by the Atlanta Tipoff Club.

As for the players, junior guard Elisa Pinzan was named the conference’s Most Improved Player and earned a spot on the second team, sophomore guard Maria Alvarez was tabbed as the co-sixth player of the year, senior forward Bethy Mununga and sophomore guard Elena Tsineke were given first-team honors, and sophomore guard Syndi Harvey was a third-team selection.

If the season itself was not sweet enough, the Bulls will have the opportunity to run it back as it looks like they will be returning every player on the roster after Mununga and fellow senior Shae Leverett announced their intentions to return to the team for one last ride.