Texas A&M Women Snag First NCAA Title
STEVE INSKEEP, Host:
Here's NPR's Tom Goldman.
TOM GOLDMAN: On the road to last night, Texas A&M and Notre Dame had vanquished the superpowers: UConn, Tennessee, Stanford and Baylor. And it left us all a bit adrift. could we trust the Aggies and Fightin' Irish to fill the superstar void? Could we survive without those we thought were the best? For anyone lucky enough to be in Conseco Fieldhouse last night, and you could have been there because there were 872 empty seats, there were plenty of bests.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "NOTRE DAME VICTORY MARCH")
(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)
GOLDMAN: Irish fan Matt McGraw wasn't surprised at all.
MATT MCGRAW: Tough start, great ending. You know, it's a really good team. They stay loose. They don't lose focus. They're, you know, they're really good players. They're sharp kids. They're very well coached.
(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)
GOLDMAN: What do you expect from Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw's husband?
GOLDMAN: Using the whip a little. Specifically, ordering center Danielle Adams to stop shooting jump shots and to get her big body inside. The 6'1 Adams followed orders and went out and earned the tournament's Most Outstanding Player Award.
DANIELLE ADAMS: I had a little voice in my head that said: Don't let this team down. And they've been doing everything for me, so I decided to take them on my back and just let them ride on my back.
GOLDMAN: And guess what? The championship had a star after all. Not far behind was A&M guard Tyra White. She scored the winning layup against Stanford. Last night, near the end of a taut, see-saw second half, she hit a huge three-point jumper with about a minute left as the shot clock expired.
TYRA WHITE: That was the game. That play right there. Question back there.
GOLDMAN: Ultimately, it was a night of sighs and tears for Muffet McGraw and her players. For Aggies fans reveling in their first women's basketball championship, well, we had the Notre Dame band - so equal time requires me to present Margarita Delagarza Graham from Tyler, Texas.
MARGARITA DELAGARZA GRAHAM: (Singing) The eyes of Texas are upon you...
GOLDMAN: Unidentified Woman: We'll begin with an opening statement from Coach Blair, then we'll take questions for the student athletes.
GARY BLAIR: Howdy.
GOLDMAN: Throughout his stay in Indianapolis, Blair charmed with his twang, challenged reporters to write about who was at the Final Four instead of who wasn't. And last night, again, he had the last word.
BLAIR: Tom Goldman, NPR News, Indianapolis.
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