Dawn Staley applauded by Barack Obama, LeBron James, others after South Carolina’s 3rd title win

South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley was doubled over with emotion following the Gamecocks’ 87-75 victory over the Iowa Hawkeyes in the NCAA women’s national championship.

It was a storybook win to beat tough odds, as South Carolina became the 10th Division I team to complete a full season without a single loss (38-0).

The Gamecocks also made history as the first team since at least 2000 to win a title without a single returning starter, according to ESPN.

March Madness: Dawn Staley applauded by Barack Obama, LeBron James, others  after South Carolina's 3rd title win - Yahoo Sports

Recovering from her tears, Staley expressed gratitude to Iowa’s superstar for the excitement she brought to the game all season.

“I wanna personally thank Caitlin Clark for lifting up our sport, she carried a heavy load, when she’s the No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft she’s gonna lift that league up as well,” Staley said. “So Caitlin if you’re out there you are one of the GOATs of our game and we appreciate you.”

While Staley offered praise and recognition throughout her postgame comments, she and her players drew the same sentiments from major figures in the sports world and beyond.

Former and current athletes laud Staley, South Carolina

Staley has now won two championships in three years for South Carolina, leading the team to a 109-3 record over that span. She has three national titles as a coach but she also racked up plenty of accolades as a player.

From her two national player of the year awards at Virginia, to her three Olympic gold medals and six WNBA All-Star appearances, Staley is continuing to change women’s basketball.

Staley is the first Black coach in Division I college basketball to finish a season undefeated. Angel Reese, incoming WNBA star out of LSU, expressed excitement and gratitude following Staley’s most recent accomplishment.

Star South Carolina alums celebrate

Sunday’s win came in an emotionally charged rematch for South Carolina. The Gamecocks, highlighted by reigning WNBA Rookie of the Year Aliyah Boston, were eliminated from last year’s Final Four by Clark and the Hawkeyes.

Boston was able to experience the completion of the Gamecocks’ revenge tour in person, supporting Staley as she cried postgame.

South Carolina and the 1991 Tennessee Lady Volunteers are the only teams to claim victory in the national title game against the team that eliminated them from the previous women’s NCAA tournament.

Under Staley, A’ja Wilson led the Gamecocks to their first NCAA championship in 2017. She went on to become a two-time WNBA champion and MVP with the Las Vegas Aces.

Related Posts

Our Privacy policy

https://autulu.com - © 2024 News