Saturday, 23 March, 2019

SC coach Dawn Staley responds to accusations from Missouri as controversy continues

Ron Jenkins  Getty Images Ron Jenkins Getty Images
Patty Aguilar | 01 February, 2018, 02:14

After the first, a 83-74 victory for Missouri on January 7, it was alleged that some Missouri fans called some SC players "thugs". Two Missouri reserves were ejected from the game after stepping onto the court during the fight.

Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk said Tiger women's basketball players were spit on and had racial slurs yelled at them during their 64-54 loss to No. 7 SC on Sunday. I think those girls at SC play with grittiness and toughness and I think they're really talented.

When Robin Pingeton was asked to respond to those accusations on Tuesday, she spoke slowly and seemed to have tears in her eyes.

"I was really disappointed with some things that transpired", she said, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Pingeton did not confirm nor deny the accusations. There is no place in our game for that. Fans got to be better all around. Fans got to be better. All around - their side, our side, fans gotta be better. "I stand by every single thing that they bring to the building because it's appropriate and well within game rules". There were certainly some things that were really unfortunate that transpired, not only verbally and some other things (spitting) you alluded to. "It was really kind of unhealthy, if you will", he said on the KTGR Big Show on Tuesday.

Camera angles from the game were unable to show whether or not the incident happened since the final shots of ESPN2's broadcast showed the players shaking hands at the end of the game.

In response to Sterk's claim, SC athletic director Ray Tanner said his school conducted an investigation, which didn't confirm Missouri's allegations.

A team spokesperson said Staley would have no immediate comment.

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'In anticipation of this rivalry game, the athletics department provided security for the Missouri basketball team, above its standard operating procedure'. "In this review, we received no confirmation of the alleged behavior directed at the visiting team by fans at the game".

SC athletic director Ray Tanner spoke to the media on Wednesday as well.

"Unfortunately, I think, you know, Coach Staley promoted that kind of atmosphere", Sterk said in the radio interview.

"I do believe a retraction is necessary from Jim Sterk's comments", Tanner added.

After Missouri's upset win against then-No.

A SC spokesperson said of Staley, "She does not have a comment at this time". The camera angle the officials used to determine who came off the bench was focused on MU's sideline, so South Carolina's Bianca Jackson was not penalized even though she, too, stepped on the floor. "I would definitely like to see some proof of anything said".

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