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Monday, January 13, 2014
Nikki McCray to continue coaching

ESPN.com news services

South Carolina assistant Nikki McCray will continue to coach through the season after being diagnosed with breast cancer, the school announced Monday.

Nikki McCray
Assistant Nikki McCray was diagnosed with a treatable form of breast cancer in November. She'll continue to coach this season.

McCray, 42, said Monday she was diagnosed in November and was told by doctors her condition was treatable. McCray says she'll continue coaching through the season, if possible. The Gamecocks, ranked 10th last week, are 16-1 and lead the Southeastern Conference with a 4-0 mark.

"This will definitely be a challenge, but I am getting prepared to fight and win this battle," McCray said in a statement released Monday. "We are a close family here at South Carolina. ... I am thankful for everyone's continued support."

McCray, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time WNBA All-Star selection, has helped the Gamecocks to back-to-back 25-win seasons under coach Dawn Staley.

"When Nikki called me with the unexpected news, my immediate reaction was to become the best supporter for her through this process," Staley said. "Family is important to us, and we all have embraced Nikki's diagnosis with that mindset and providing her with all the moral and physical support she needs."

McCray has been on Staley's staff all six seasons at South Carolina.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.