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Rock Island native, South Carolina's Beal to square off against hometown team in Final Four

Friday's contest between South Carolina and Iowa will be one to remember for the ages, especially in the Quad Cities.
Credit: AP
South Carolina guard Brea Beal is introduced before a second-round game against Miami in the NCAA college basketball tournament Sunday, March 20, 2022 in Columbia, S.C. South Carolina won 49-33. (AP Photo/Sean Rayford)

DALLAS — Rock Island's Brea Beal is headed to her third consecutive NCAA Final Four as a member of the South Carolina Gamecocks basketball squad. The Gamecocks' 86-75 victory on Monday propelled them into the Final Four, where they'll face Iowa on Friday at 8 p.m. 

Beal has been a full-time starter since she set foot on campus in 2019 as a highly touted five-star prospect, and she's arguably capping off the best season of her career. Beal's averaging seven points, four rebounds, three assists, a steal and a block, all while shooting 43% from the field and showcasing elite defense. 

Beal and the Gamecocks won the 2022 NCAA Championship, defeating UConn 64-59 in last year's championship match.  In order to repeat, Beal will have to defeat the Hawkeyes, the team many Quad Citizens would consider their home-town Division 1 program. 

South Carolina is projected as 11.5-point favorites against Iowa, who advanced after defeating Louisville, the same team that South Carolina defeated in their 2022 Final Four match. Interestingly, had Louisville defeated Iowa on Sunday, Beal would be squaring off against former Rock Island teammate and Louisville Guard Chrislyn Carr in the Final Four. 

Friday's contest between South Carolina and Iowa will be one to remember. The eyes of QC sports fans will be glued to the TV as Beal aims to reach her second consecutive championship game against the offensive prowess of Caitlin Clark and the Hawkeyes.

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