Published on May 17, 2022 on

Destiny Littleton closes her eyes. Clears her head. The lights dim as the national anthem starts to play. She tells herself to stay ready.

Whether you play a lot, a little, or none at all, be a great teammate, she thinks to herself. Believe in yourself, hit shots, and be you.

As the game gets underway, she watches and waits from the bench. She cheers and claps. Minutes pass. Sometimes, the entire first half. She doesn’t know when she’ll be called into the game. Some games her number isn’t called much at all. But when it is, she has to be on. Even if she has sat all game, her arms and legs turning completely cold—she has to deliver.

South Carolina coach Dawn Staley counts on Littleton to come in and nail a big 3. Get a stop. Energize her teammates. A national championship is at stake for the Gamecocks (29-2), the no. 1 overall seed in the NCAA women’s tournament. South Carolina will open the tournament against Howard on Friday. And on a team of future WNBA stars, including Aliyah Boston, Destanni Henderson, and Zia Cooke, Littleton might be the team’s biggest X factor. The 5-foot-9 senior guard’s magnificence can’t be measured by numbers, but rather by how big she shows up when it matters most. (READ FULL STORY HERE).