David Cloninger

Breaking down the Columbia Regional

Dawn Staley previews NCAA women's tournament

South Carolina women's basketball coach Dawn Staley discusses the road ahead in this year's NCAA tournament. That road starts this weekend at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia.
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South Carolina women's basketball coach Dawn Staley discusses the road ahead in this year's NCAA tournament. That road starts this weekend at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia.

Breaking down the four teams in the Columbia regional:

(1) SOUTH CAROLINA GAMECOCKS (31-1)

Bid: Automatic

League (record): SEC (16-0)

Coach (history): Dawn Staley (Virginia ’92; 186-75 USC, eighth year; 358-155 overall, 16th year; former coach at Temple)

NCAA tournament appearances (record): 13 (17-12)

Final Fours: One (2015)

National championships (years): None

Top scorers: F A’ja Wilson (16.4), Tiffany Mitchell (15.0)

Top rebounders: C Alaina Coates (10.1), F A’ja Wilson (8.7)

Top 3-point shooters: G Tina Roy (36.7 percent), G Tiffany Mitchell (35.2 percent)

Top disher: G Tiffany Mitchell (81 assists)

Top rejector: F A’ja Wilson (94 blocks)

(8) GEORGE WASHINGTON COLONIALS (26-6)

Bid: Automatic

League (record): Atlantic 10 (13-3)

Coach (history): Jonathan Tsipis (North Carolina ’96; 92-37 George Washington/overall, fourth year)

NCAA tournament appearances (record): 17 (18-16)

Final Fours: None

National championships (years): None

Top scorers: F Johnquel Jones (16.0), F Caira Washington (13.4)

Top rebounders: F Johnquel Jones (14.7), F Caira Washington (8.7)

Top 3-point shooters: G Mei-Lyn Bautista (39.7 percent), G Shannon Cranshaw (31.1 percent)

Top disher: G Lauren Chase (191 assists)

Top rejector: F Johnquel Jones (69 blocks)

All-time record against USC: Never played

Last played USC: Never played

Common opponents with USC (USC record against): None

(9) KANSAS STATE WILDCATS (18-12)

Bid: At-large

League (record): Big 12 (8-10)

Coach (history): Jeff Mittie (Missouri Western ’89; 37-26 Kansas State, second year; 473-249 overall, 24th year; former coach at Missouri Western, Arkansas State, TCU)

NCAA tournament appearances (record): 14 (11-13)

Final Fours: None

National championships (years): None

Top scorers: C Breanna Lewis (16.7), G Kindred Wesemann (12.5)

Top rebounders: C Breanna Lewis (7.5), G Shaelyn Martin (6.8)

Top 3-point shooters: G Kindred Wesemann (40.4 percent), G Megan Deines (31.5 percent)

Top disher: G Shaelyn Martin (104 assists)

Top rejector: C Breanna Lewis (74 blocks)

All-time record against USC: 1-1

Last played USC: Nov. 29, 1981, at Manhattan, Kan. (USC 81-65)

Common opponents with USC (USC record against): Lost to Connecticut (USC 0-1)

(16) JACKSONVILLE DOLPHINS (22-10)

Bid: Automatic

League (record): Atlantic Sun (11-3)

Coach (history): Yolett McPhee-McCuin (Rhode Island ’04; 47-44 Jacksonville/overall, third year)

NCAA tournament appearances (record): One (0-0)

Final Fours: None

National championships (years): None

Top scorers: G Sherranda Reddick (12.4), F Briona Brown (11.7)

Top rebounders: F Kayla Gordon (7.9), F Briona Brown (6.7)

Top 3-point shooters: G Sherranda Reddick (36.2 percent), F Briona Brown (30.5 percent)

Top disher: G Brandi Buie (81 assists)

Top rejector: F Kimberly Dawkins (53 blocks)

All-time record against USC: 0-2

Last played USC: Dec. 30, 2008, at Columbia (USC 58-50)

Common opponents with USC (USC record against): None

USC Women's Basketball team is starting their post-season run by hosting Jacksonville in the NCAA Regional

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