By DOUG FEINBERG
Minneapolis (AP) — Dawn Staley and Genoa Aurima hugged on the midcourt after South Carolina finished UConn’s undefeated run in the NCAA Championship game.
This is the first time a coach has met on the biggest stage of women’s basketball, with many talented players, including the last two AP Players of the Year in Ariya Boston and Pagebookers, South Carolina. It may not be the last time to come back next season in UConn.
“It’s hard to say what happens each year,” Auriemma said. “This year was a perfect example of what you’re planning on, but suddenly your plan was blown up. I like opportunities. I have to navigate the season like this year. If you knock on a tree, I think I’ll be back next year if I can stay healthy. “
The first match went to the gamecock in a dominant way. He won 64-49 on Sunday and brought Starry his second national championship with two title game appearances. It left Auriemma in his first defeat in 12 attempts.
“See the UConn tradition and what they did,” Staley said. “They are standard. If I need to win 11 national championships to become a dynasty, I’ll probably be below that, because I’m not going to participate in the game enough time to win 11. Because there isn’t. “
But she sets her own standards. This victory made Starry the first black coach to win two national championships in the Men’s or Women’s Division I Basketball, and she won her first championship in 2017.
“I’m a black coach, so I felt a lot of pressure to win,” she said. “If we don’t win, you bring in a lot of other scrutiny. You were enough to get it done so you couldn’t coach, but you still failed. You failed. Feel it all, and because we’re on this platform, you probably feel it 10 times more than anyone else. “
Staley said he feels he can inspire other black coaches.
“If I can be the light of that hope, if they can be their vessel for success, this game has given me a lot, so you’re glad I’m in this game I know you are the giver. “
On Sunday night, it gave Starry another championship.
“We played all the possessions like the last one,” Staley said. “They decided to be the champion today.”
A year ago, South Carolina lost in the final four when Boston missed the layup before the buzzer.
“Obviously, I’ve been thinking about this since last season. Everyone had a picture of me crying,” said Boston, the best player in the Final Four. “Today we are national champions and I’m in tears.”
South Carolina took UConn to school on the board after Starley wore a Louis Vuitton letterman jacket and called a shot, and the Associated Press voted for a wire-to-wire run as the country’s No. 1 team. I won.
“They deserve it 100%,” said Auriemma. “They were the best teams of the year. For the first five minutes I thought they came out and set the tone on the fly about how the game would be played.”
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South Carolina Dawn Staley defeats Norristown’s Gino Aurima’s Connecticut in the NCAA Women’s Title
Source link South Carolina Dawn Staley defeats Norristown’s Gino Aurima’s Connecticut in the NCAA Women’s Title