North Philly’s own, Dawn Staley made history when her South Carolina Gamecocks defeated  Mississippi State, 67-55, to win the NCAA women’s basketball championship. Staley became the second African-American head coach to win an NCAA Division 1 Championship.

It’s the first time Staley left the Final Four with the final win, after falling short three times as a player and once as a coach two years ago at South Carolina.

Staley and the Gamecocks held a comeback from the Bulldogs in the third and fourth quarters, never letting MSU get closer than four points after taking a lead late in the first quarter.

“It means that I can check off one of the things that had been a void in my career,” said Staley wearing the championship net around her neck in the postgame press conference. “Something I wanted to do. It was one of two opportunities that I saw women play when I was younger — national championship games and Olympics. Those were things that I held dear and near to me growing up. Those were the things I saw and were shooting for.”

Staley has now joined Carolyn Peck, who won a title at Purdue.

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