May 16, 2016

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) The Southeastern Conference women's basketball tournament is returning to Greenville next season, the first pre-determined NCAA postseason event held in the state since the removal of the Confederate flag from statehouse grounds last summer.

Officials from the league and the Bon Secours Wellness Arena announced the site of the 2017 event Monday. The tournament was last held at the arena in 2005.

South Carolina has won the past two SEC tournaments and Gamecocks coach Dawn Staley said she looks forward to trying for a third trophy close to home.

The NCAA had banned the state from holding pre-determined events because of the Confederate flag. Lawmakers voted to take down the flag following the killing of nine people at Emanuel AME Church last June.

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