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Mississippi State advances to the Elite Eight

Mark D. Smith, USA Today Sports

Teaira McCowan’s dominant fourth quarter leads Mississippi State Women’s Basketball to its first Elite Eight in school history.

There was a lot for Mississippi State to prepare for in its Sweet 16 matchup with Washington on this past Friday.  The Huskies had the NCAA all-time leading scorer in Kelsey Plum and the nation’s top rebounder in Chantel Osahor.  Plum did score 29 points in the match with Mississippi State. However, no one was prepared for the fourth quarter 20-point performance that the 6’7” sophomore center McCowan had.

Her teammates told her to take over and she listened. “They said, “T, you got to dominate.” McCowan said. Just taking that in, listening to my teammates, knowing I had to step up, take my team, like, further. That’s when I had that look in my eye, “Nobody can stop you.”

McCowan dominated the final quarter against star rebounder Chantel Oshaor racking up 20 points, seven rebounds and five blocks in the fourth quarter alone. She finished with 26 points and 12 rebounds.

Mississippi State coach Vic Schaefer said his team is getting over looked. “They’re not getting a lot of credit right now,” he said. “That’s fine. You know what? We’ll fly under the radar the whole way if we have to.”

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MSU held Washington to 20 points under their season average and the hot-shooting Huskies made just 39 percent from the field while getting outrebounded 49-34.  That was on the part of McCowan’s blocked shots and the defense that All-SEC defensive player, Dominique Dillingham played on Plum.

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Next up  for MSU is #1 seed Baylor in the Oklahoma City Regional Semifinal on Sunday at 6:30 pm on ESPN.  This is going to be a very tough challenge for the Lady Bulldogs. Baylor took care of Louisville easily.  It will be the toughest game of the season by far for Mississippi State.

 

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