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13 Games, 1 Tournament and how Steffi Sorensen Made it Through

Steffi Sorensen during on of her 13 SEC Women’s Tournament games that she worked two weeks ago. (via @SteffiSorensen)

A couple of weeks back, ESPN and SEC Network women’s basketball commentator Steffi Sorensen took on her biggest challenge yet: working all 13 games of the SEC Women’s Basketball Tournament.

“I don’t think I knew what I was getting myself into initially, because it’s mentally and physically a gauntlet, but there’s no way I was going to turn down the opportunity to close out the tournament and see it through,” Sorensen said.

In her role on the sideline, Sorensen served as a hybrid analyst and reporter on ESPN and SEC Network’s coverage from Nashville, giving both basketball insight and key storylines throughout the week.

“Something that really impresses me with Steffi’s growth over her time at ESPN is that as much as she’s giving insight to viewers at home in both an analysis and reporting role, she’s also talking back to the truck to make sure we’re seeing different angles and perspectives throughout our production,” ESPN coordinating producer Pat Lowry said. “She’s contributing across the board and has turned into another set of eyes and ears to help us out.”

Thursday and Friday are considered the longest days of the tournament with four games each day, and Sorensen teamed up with the production and announcing crews to get the intel she needed from the practice sessions she couldn’t attend while doing on-camera duty during the afternoon and evening sessions.

Thirteen games, 14 teams and more than 75,000 steps later, Sorensen closed out the tournament with South Carolina and Dawn Staley winning their fourth consecutive SEC title.

“As a former SEC athlete, I played against Pat Summitt and my now-colleague Andy Landers, but to be front row and witness history with Coach Staley winning her fourth straight SEC title was incredibly humbling,” Sorensen said.

“Working 13 games is a lot, but the beauty of it is that you know everything that’s happened in the tournament,” Lowry noted. “You’re the one person who has been there from a content perspective. Steffi took full advantage of that insight and shared it with everyone.”

Sorensen kept busy following her stint in Nashville as well, serving as an analyst for the Sun Belt Tournament in New Orleans on ESPN3 to give her more than 20 games in 10 days. She is also part of ESPN’s NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament coverage calling the first and second rounds from Columbia, S.C. on ESPN2 and the ESPN App on Friday, March 16 at 5 and 7 p.m. ET.