Dawn Staley keeps finding ways to make Philly proud

South Carolina coach Dawn Staley cuts down the net as she and her team celebrate their win over Mississippi State in the finals of NCAA women's basketball championship.

No matter how much North Philadelphia-born Dawn Staley achieves, she always holds her hometown close to her heart. After coaching the University of South Carolina women’s basketball team to the NCAA Final Four championship on Sunday, she tweeted, “NORTH PHILLY STAND UP!! Repped for my city! #phillymade.”

Staley never forgets that she grew up in the Raymond Rosen projects at 23rd and Diamond Streets, where she shot basketballs into a crate nailed to a telephone pole; never forgets her high school days at Dobbins Tech; or when she dribbled basketballs at Hank Gathers recreation center.

She certainly doesn’t forget coming home to coach at Temple after being a star at the University of Virginia, where she set a former NCAA record for steals. Staley, who carried the American flag in the 2004 Olympics, has won three Olympic gold medals and will coach the U.S.A. women’s basketball team at the 2020 Games.

Once again, Staley made Philadelphia proud with the Gamecocks’ 67-55 victory Sunday over Mississippi State. This daughter of Philadelphia deserves our warmest congratulations.