Dawn Staley looks back on Sunday’s spectacular defeat to Kentucky in South Carolina in the SEC Tournament Championship Game. The latest episode of NETLIFE..
Wildcats, the seventh seeded in the tournament, overcame a 15-point deficit. Confuse the game cock In the last few seconds. Dre’Una Edwards hit three pointers in the fourth quarter with five seconds remaining, defeating Kentucky 64-62 and winning the program’s first SEC tournament title in 40 years.
“The results weren’t what we expected,” Staley says in this week’s podcast. “We couldn’t reach our goal.”
Starry, whose team is ranked number one in the country throughout the season, recognized the fourth quarter as a problem area during the tournament. The day before Gamecock allowed Kentucky to return to the finals, they beat Olemis 21-8 in the fourth quarter of the semifinals and continued to win 61-51.
“Anything can happen in March,” says Staley. “We came across a very hot Kentucky women’s basketball team hanging with us, and they eventually stole the game and the championship.”
With the game in mind, Starry praised Kentucky coach Keira Elsie for his work. She sent a text message to Elsie after the match on Sunday, congratulating her and saying, “I’m glad you weren’t me.”
Following last year’s finals between Starry, South Carolina and Joni Taylor, Georgia, two blackhead coaches faced each other for the second time in the SEC Tournament Championship game.
Despite the upset to Kentucky, Starry hopes South Carolina will remain number one overall in the NCAA tournament after losing just one match during the regular season.
“From the perspective of South Carolina women’s basketball, we have to go back to the horse, and we have a lot of basketball left to play, so we have to ride the horse,” she says. “Our message is that we must be more disciplined. This defeat is a lesson that we hope to drive us to raise the national championship trophy.”
For Starry’s full comments prior to the NCAA Tournament Selection Sunday, Listen to NETLIFE..