Bowdoin College and the University of New England will extend their women’s basketball seasons into the NCAA Division III tournament.

And the Polar Bears have the added benefit of opening at home.

Pairings for the tournament were announced Monday.

Bowdoin will host an NCAA D3 regional this weekend at Morrell Gymnasium in Brunswick. Adrienne Shibles, in her seventh season as Bowdoin’s head coach, didn’t hide her joy in learning her team would be at home.

“I think it’s a huge advantage,” she said. “We’ve done exceptionally well (12-0) at home this year. To play in front of our crowd, and for our seniors to play another home game, is really special.”

Bowdoin (23-4) will play Babson College (20-8) at 7 p.m. Friday. Their game will be preceded by a game between Ithaca College (22-5) and Mount St. Vincent (22-5) at 5 p.m. The winners play at 7 p.m. Saturday.

UNE, meanwhile, goes on the road for its first-round game. The Nor’easters (23-5), who won their third straight Commonwealth Coast Conference championship on Saturday, will travel to Madison, New Jersey, to play Catholic University (19-8) Friday night. Defending NCAA D3 champion FDU-Florham (26-1), ranked fourth in the nation, will play Johnson & Wales (19-9) in the other game in that bracket. The winners will meet Saturday night.

Nor’easters Coach Anthony Ewing said it really doesn’t matter where the games are played.

“If your mind-set is that you’re just trying to win one game in the tournament, then it really matters where you go,” he said. “But if your mind-set is to win the tournament, then it doesn’t matter. You have to beat everyone anyway.”

Bates College was the only D3 men’s team from Maine to make the national tournament. It will be the Bobcats’ first appearance in the tournament. Bates will play St. Vincent College in a first-round game Friday at Stockton University in Galloway, New Jersey.

While Bowdoin, ranked 16th nationally in the latest D3hoops.com poll, has played well at home this year, Shibles knows the Polar Bears cannot let up. Bowdoin lost in the first round at home last year to Castleton State.

“We are looking to show everyone what we’re made of and showcase our talents this year,” said Shibles.

“Last year we went out early and we’re looking to make up for that.”

Bowdoin has a balanced team, led by Shannon Brady (14.6 points per game) and Sara Binkhorst (14.5). “We have a remarkable group of women with great leadership and great chemistry,” said Shibles.

UNE enters the tournament having won nine of its last 10 games. Alanna Vose leads UNE with 14.0 points per game and Kelly Coleman averages 13.6.

“We were a little up and down during the season,” said Ewing. “But coming into the tournament, and through the (conference) tournament, we’re playing some of the best ball we’ve played all season. It’s similar to what we did last year. I know we have not peaked yet this year.”

The Nor’easters advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament last year.

“I think we qualify as a veteran team,” said Ewing. “Everyone but our one freshman has won an NCAA tournament game. There shouldn’t be any kind of overwhelmed feeling.”