TERESA WEATHERSPOON TO MAKE GARDEN COACHING DEBUT IN ANNUAL MAGGIE DIXON CLASSIC
Women’s basketball pioneer and New York Liberty legend, Teresa Weatherspoon will make her Garden coaching debut in the annual Maggie Dixon Classic, MSG Sports and the Dixon Family announced today. Duke, Louisiana Tech, Rutgers and local favorite St. John’s University will take to the court at the World’s Most Famous Arena on Sunday, December 9th, in what has become the nation’s premier women’s college basketball showcase. The national matchups will mark the seventh anniversary of the Maggie Dixon Classic and the sixth consecutive season The Garden has hosted the event.
Weatherspoon, affectionally known as “T-Spoon”, was one of the original WNBA players and donned the New York Liberty uniform from 1997-2003. Known as a charismatic leader with high energy, “T- Spoon” quickly became a fan favorite not only at Madison Square Garden, but throughout the WNBA. The perennial All-Star led the Liberty to the first-ever WNBA Finals in 1997 and will always be remembered for hitting a half-court shot against the Houston Comets to extend the 1999 WNBA Finals. Honored as the Maggie Dixon rookie coach of the year in 2010, Weatherspoon will lead her Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters in her Garden coaching debut to take on C. Vivian Stringer and Rutgers University, who will make their fifth appearance in the Maggie Dixon Classic.
“I’m so excited that my players will have the opportunity to play at MSG,” Weatherspoon said. “The memories that I have are in my mind, body, and soul and will never be forgotten. The opportunity to play at the World’s Most Famous Arena, in front of those amazing fans, will give my young players the confidence they need to be successful.”
“The Maggie Dixon Classic has become one of the premier showcases in women’s college basketball and having the opportunity to compete in the first four years was a tremendous privilege, said coach Stringer. “Maggie was one of the rising stars in the profession who had an amazing passion and love for the game. This is an opportunity to keep her legacy alive and bring awareness to a cause that affects the lives of many Americans.”
Coming off one their best season’s and returning with four starters, the Red Storm of St. John’s will take on Duke in the second game of the doubleheader. The game will be a rematch of last season’s NCAA tournament regional semifinal when the Blue Devils defeated the Red Storm to advance to the regional finals.
“We are so very pleased and honored to be a part of the Maggie Dixon Classic for the second time in six years,” Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said. “Maggie’s incredible passion and commitment are forever a part of this event.”
“I have tremendous admiration for everything the Dixon Family and Madison Square Garden do in memory of Maggie, who I was fortunate to briefly meet in 2006,” St. John’s associate head coach Joe Tartamella said. “As a young head coach starting out, I have great respect for what she did with Army’s program in such a short time.”
The Maggie Dixon Classic is held annually in memory of the former Army Black Knights women’s basketball coach. On April 6, 2006, 29 year old Maggie Dixon died from an undiagnosed heart condition. Over the course of her six months as head coach at the United States Military Academy she led the program to unprecedented heights; the Black Knights played in their first Patriot League Championship and Dixon led her team to their first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance.
Over 325,000 Americans die every year from sudden cardiac arrest and Madison Square Garden will again team with the Dixon family to host a Heart Health Fair during both games.
#4 Duke Women’s Basketball: Highlights: Duke 85, Georgia Tech 52
Highlights: Duke 85, Georgia Tech 52