The Signal

Serving the College since 1885

Monday April 15th

March Madness: First and second round of men’s basketball

<p><em>Marquette and Western Kentucky in their first round matchup (Photo courtesy of bk1bennett / </em><a href="" target="_blank"><em>Flickr</em></a><em>).</em></p>

Marquette and Western Kentucky in their first round matchup (Photo courtesy of bk1bennett / Flickr).

By Brinda Patel

With high stakes and tension, one college team clinched victory in the annual men’s basketball NCAA Tournament. This past weekend, the first and second rounds of the basketball tournaments delivered a roller coaster of emotions. The best month on the college sports calendar has arrived!

Sixteen first-round games took place on Friday, March 22.

In order:

  • Northwestern vs. FAU (Score: 77-65)

  • Baylor vs. Colgate (Score: 92-67)

  • San Diego State vs UAB (Score: 69-65)

  • Marquette vs. Western Kentucky (Score: 87-69)

  • UConn vs. Stetson (Score: 92-51)

  • Clemson vs. New Mexico (Score: 77-56)

  • Yale vs. Auburn (Score: 78-76)

  • Colorado vs. Florida (Score: 102-100)

  • Texas A&M vs. Nebraska (Score: 98-82)

  • Duke vs. Vermont (Score: 64-47)

  • Purdue vs. Grambling State (Score: 78-50)

  • Alabama vs. Charleston (Score: 109-96)

  • Houston vs. Longwood (Score: 86-46)

  • James Madison vs. Wisconsin (Score: 72-61)

  • Utah State vs. TCU (Score: 88-72)

  • Grand Canyon vs. Saint Mary’s (Score: 75-66)

The biggest highlight of this round was JMU sweeping the rug from Wisconsin’s feet with a 12-over-5 upset with a score of 72-61. JMU went on to play No. 4 seed Duke on Sunday. This college went from the considered underdog to a powerhouse team now favored by many devoted NCAA basketball fans. 

Grand Canyon, James Madison, Yale and Colorado were the first-round upsets in the games on  Friday. Colorado beating Florida and Yale pulling an upset over Auburn were quite notable. 

With a halftime score of 28-27, No. 12 seed Grand Canyon reigned over No. 5 seed Saint Mary’s under 12 minutes. The GCU Antelopes scored the first points of that half, and their 16-1 run let them dominate and garner control up to a score of 51-35. In college sports culture, Saint Mary’s is not well known for having big comebacks. The Gaels should devise a better defense strategy for more outstanding scores.

Eight second-round games took place on Sunday: 

  • Marquette vs. Colorado (Score: 81-77)

  • Clemson vs. Baylor (Score: 72-64)

  • San Diego State vs. Yale (Score: 85-57)

  • Purdue vs. Utah State (Score: 106-67)

  • Houston vs. Texas A&M (OT Score: 100-95)

  • Duke vs. James Madison (Score: 93-55)

  • Connecticut vs. Northwestern (Score: 75-58)

  • Alabama vs. Grand Canyon (Score: 85-57)

In their game, Duke showcased their tenacity and grit. Led by their point guard, freshman Jared McCain, they fought fiercely, matching every basket JMU made. The main obstacle for the team occurred when guard Jeremy Roach exited the game with a dislocated finger. He got his left ring and pinky fingers taped, and he still managed to play 34 minutes. Regardless, with each steal and eight three-pointers from McCain swished through the net, Duke gained further momentum, fueled by their can-do attitude. 

McCain said to Spectrum News 1, “I feel like every game, I’m always ready to see if I’m going to go off. As a shooter when you hit some early, obviously they want to press up on you. So it definitely makes the game wide open for drives, for kicks.” 

This is the 27th time Duke University has escaped the first weekend in 39 tournaments since 25 teams were added to the bracket in 1985. 

Because of the shocking results of this past week, let’s see how far the remaining teams persist during this Thursday’s Sweet 16 tournament!


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