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March 23, 2017

WBCA All-Region Nominees

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina senior center Alaina Coates and junior forward A’ja Wilson have been selected as Regional Finalists for the WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team, the organization announced Thursday. The Gamecocks are one of three programs to boast multiple players in contention for the national accolade from Region 2.

The selection committee will select the 10-member WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team later this season.

Coates remained a dominant force down low in her senior year, leading the Gamecocks with 15 double-doubles in the regular season. She paced the Gamecocks in rebounds 20 times on the season, and her 19 boards in Carolina’s 79-49 win at Arkansas on Feb. 5 are the most by an SEC player this season. The center finished in double figures in six of her eight games against top-25 foes during the regular season and notched 20-point efforts against No. 9/9 UCLA (Dec. 18) and No. 25/- Kentucky (Feb. 2). Her .670 shooting percentage on the year currently leads the SEC and ranks fourth in the nation.

Wilson, the 2017 SEC Player of the Year, willed Carolina to its third-straight sweep of the league titles. The forward registered three consecutive 20-point games to help secure the Gamecocks the SEC regular-season championship before averaging 21.3 points and 9.7 rebounds in Carolina’s three-day run to the SEC Tournament title. Wilson, who notched her third career double-double in NCAA Tournament play this past Sunday against Arizona State, boasts averages of 19.6 points and 8.0 rebounds in the Gamecocks’ five postseason contests this season. On the defensive side, the junior ranks 22nd nationally and first in the SEC with 2.5 blocks per game. Wilson garnered All-America honors from Sports Illustrated and espnW earlier this month.

The No. 3/4 Gamecocks (29-4) continue their NCAA Tournament run this weekend when they face Quinnipiac in the Sweet 16 on Sat., March, 25 at the Stockton Arena in Stockton, Calif. Tipoff between top-seeded Carolina and the No. 12 seed Bobcats is set for 4 p.m. ET.

Region 2 Honorees
Evelyn Akhator, Kentucky
Alaina Coates, South Carolina
Sophie Cunningham, Missouri
Diamond DeShields, Tennessee
Makayla Epps, Kentucky
Mercedes Russell, Tennessee
Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
Ronni Williams, Florida
A’ja Wilson, South Carolina