South Carolina has become the preeminent NCAA women’s basketball powerhouse under the guidance of Dawn Staley.
With a 32-0 record heading into March Madness, the Gamecocks are the No. 1 overall seed and hoping to hold onto their crown after winning their second national title under Staley last year. Can they become the fourth school in history to win back-to-back titles?
Here are six numbers that highlight how utterly dominant South Carolina women’s basketball has been this year:
That’s the number of consecutive weeks South Carolina has spent atop the Associated Press Top 25.
The Gamecocks have joined elite company after the final AP poll of the 2022-23 season was released March 13 as the third program to hold the No. 1 slot wire-to-wire in back-to-back seasons. The only two schools to do so before were UConn and Louisiana Tech.
Entering the NCAA Tournament, the Gamecocks have posted a 67-2 record in the past two seasons, including a 20-0 mark against ranked opponents. They were also back-to-back regular-season SEC champions and won the 2023 SEC Tournament title after the major upset Kentucky pulled over them in the final last year — South Carolina’s most recent loss.
That’s the scoring margin between South Carolina and its opponents, by far the best in the nation.
The Gamecocks averaged 81.4 points per game this season, 30.3 more than their opponents did at 51.1. A majority of their games ended with shocking disparities in the scores, like 101-31 vs. East Tennessee State on Nov. 7 and 102-39 against Coastal Carolina on Dec. 21.
The team to score the most points in a matchup with South Carolina was UConn in an 81-77 loss on Feb. 5, which was also the Gamecocks’ closest game this season.
That’s the number of times South Carolina went to the line this season.
The Gamecocks shot 69.7% from the charity stripe, making 499 of their 716 attempts. Aliyah Boston and Zia Cooke found themselves posted there they most, each with 128 attempts and shooting between 76.6-79.7%.
That’s the average home attendance at South Carolina women’s basketball games.
The Gamecocks more often than not pack Colonial Life Arena to the brim. They have managed to sell out the 18,000-seat arena seven times since it opened in 2002. One of those times was this year, when undefeated LSU made the trip up on Feb. 12 to battle for the leading position in the SEC and came away with a 24-point defeat.
The Gamecocks have led the country in average home attendance in each of the last eight seasons, including 2022-23, according to the Greenville News.
That’s the number of minutes Aliyah Boston was on the court for South Carolina.
The Gamecocks star guard is averaging 25.9 minutes per game across 32 games, never missing a matchup or a chance in the starting five. She averages 13.3 points per game, shooting 56.8% from the field, for a total of 426 points on the season and 1,886 on her career.
That’s the number of rebounds South Carolina is averaging per game, compared to just 29.1 for their opponents, the margin of 20.5 also easily leading the country.
The Gamecocks have dominated on the boards this season, with Boston (9.7 rpg) and Kamilla Cardoso (8.9) leading the way in that sector. Boston ended the regular season with 310 total, 200 defensive and 110 offensive, and Cardoso with 276 total, 162 defensive and 114 offensive.
Published at Fri, 17 Mar 2023 06:30:04 +0000