Seniors have better send off at Mississippi State
It was senior day at Mississippi State on Sunday.
After the regular season version didn’t go the way the Bulldogs had planned, they had a do over in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
MSU seniors Breanna Richardson, Chinwe Okorie, Dominique Dillingham and Ketara Chapel went out winners at Humphrey Coliseum with a 92-71 victory over the DePaul Blue Demons.
It was a satisfying way for the MSU seniors to finish at home after losing to Tennessee 82-64 to end the Southeastern Conference schedule.
“It was definitely a lot better senior day (Sunday) than it was against Tennessee,” said Dillingham, who had 10 points and reached the 1,000-point mark of her career. “It was a bitter-sweet moment just knowing it was the last time to play at the Hump, but it was a great feeling just to know how much we accomplished in the four years we were here and I just love all the fans and I want to thank them for everything and for being here.”
The senior Bulldogs not only won, but they were active participants in the success.
That quartet combined for 40 of the points and three of the four scored in double digits.
Along with Dillingham, Richardson and Okorie had 12 points each for MSU and Chapel added six points. Okorie was just one rebound from a double-double after pulling down nine boards.
Richardson subbed in early in the second half and scored five quick points to begin the Bulldog surge that turned a one-point halftime lead into a 21-point victory.
“Really thought it was something to take advantage of,” MSU coach Vic Schaefer said. “Bre was really good and she is playing with confidence right now.”
Schaefer took the Tennessee loss hard and called it “disappointing” at the time. He feels a tremendous amount of responsibility to his job and the team he coaches.
After getting another chance to send the seniors out the right way, Schaefer was glad to see the Bulldogs take advantage of it.
“They are going to go down as the winningest all-time class in the history of the program,” Schaefer said. “They are going to go down as four of the best players to ever play here. I hated it for them that they had to go out that way. I couldn’t be more happy (Sunday) knowing they went out the way they did.”