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WBB: St. John's to play in Maggie Dixon Classic

St. John's head coach Joe Tartamella reacts to

St. John's head coach Joe Tartamella reacts to a call during the first half of a first-round game against Dayton in the women's NCAA college basketball tournament. (March 24, 2013) (Credit: AP)

St. John’s will play in the Maggie Dixon Classic on December 22 at Madison Square Garden for the third straight season, the school announced Monday. It will be the third straight season the Red Storm will play in the Classic.

St. John’s will face Texas A&M at 11:00 a.m. Reigning NCAA champion Connecticut will face California in the second game.

The Classic is held in memory of former Army coach Maggie Dixon, who died from an undiagnosed heart condition on April 6, 2006. Dixon led the Black Nights to their first Patriot League championship and NCAA Tournament appearance.

“For us to be chosen by the Garden and the Dixon family to play in this premier basketball event for the third year is such a tremendous honor,” St. John’s coach Joe Tartamella said. “Whenever we get to play at Madison Square Garden, the “Mecca” of college basketball, it is a special moment for our program."

St. John's fell to Duke, 60-42, in last year's classic.

"The Maggie Dixon Classic is a prestigious event, for an even greater cause and played in the spirit and honor of an inspirational young coach, Maggie, who I was fortunate to briefly meet in 2006," said the coach. "Once again, we are honored to be playing with these great programs, UConn, Cal and Texas A&M. We will be happy to represent New York at the Garden as the local team.”