Gamecock fans played a part in historic win over UConn

Chaunte'l Powell

Monday night 18,000 people showed up to Colonial Life Arena and not only go to witness history as the No.1 Gamecocks defeated No. 5 UConn for the first time in program history, but had a hand in the victory according senior guard Tyasha Harris.

“I want to give all the credit to our fams, our crowd,” she said. “Honestly there was about five times where the person I was guarding and the other person that was running down, they had to yell in each other’s ears to tell them the play. And they were like ‘what? What’s the play?’ and I think that slowed them down so they wouldn’t run smoothly into their plays and get ahead of us. I just want to thank the crowd for that because I was like ‘oh yeah this is good for us.’”

South Carolina has led the nation in crowd attendance, averaging more than 10,000 fans for more than a season. UConn guard Crystal Dangerfield said it’s a type of environment they don’t see a lot of throughout the year.

“I’m not sure what the attendance actually was, but they hold 18,000 and that’s probably the biggest arena we’re gonna play in,” Dangerfield said. “Their fans always come out full force and they were loud, so at times it is hard to hear what’s being said on the court, but that’s on us to look to the next person and make sure they’re on the same page.”

UConn head coach Geno Auriemma wasn’t as quick to give the crowd credit for the win, but did say it exposed how young his team was.

“[They crowd didn’t have as much impact] as their players,” he said. “We’ve come down here when it was sold out and blown them out. So it’s not about the fans, it’s about the players you bring to the arena. We’ve come down here with the best players and the best team and it wasn’t even a game ever. And today we didn’t bring the best team and when you don’t have that, the crowd does become a factor.”

The Gamecocks are back in action this Thursday when they host Auburn at 7 p.m.