Scholarship endowment named after USC's Welch - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Scholarship endowment named after USC's Welch

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

A gift from two longtime supporters of Gamecocks women's basketball will endow a full scholarship honoring three-time captain Aleighsa Welch.

According to officials from the USC athletics department, the gift from Morris and Sheila Cregger fully endows one women's basketball scholarship and will help with enhancing the women's basketball program and facility enhancement.

"I am grateful to the Creggers and the University to be recognized in this way," Welch said. "Four years ago, I never imagined that I would cap off my career at the University of South Carolina in this way, but it feels fitting to say that my college career has been `the gift that keeps on giving.' I hope this helps open the door for more female student-athletes to build their futures on hard work, character and leadership, which extends far beyond their athletic abilities on the court.”

Welch was the 22nd overall pick in the WNBA Draft by the Chicago Sky. Prior to going pro, Welch helped the Gamecocks reach their first-ever Final Four on the way to collecting 34 wins this season.

Recently, Staley was on hand to watch Aleighsa Welch as she was selected by the Chicago Sky in the WNBA Draft. The three-time captain for the Gamecocks will now have a scholarship endowed in her name. Welch became the fifth Gamecock to be selected in the WNBA Draft and the first under Staley.

After being released by the Chicago Sky in April, Welch was cut by the team one month later. However, Welch signed a contract in July to play basketball in Portugal.

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