Men's Basketball

College basketball notebook: Upsets cause March Madness in NCAA tournament

(14) Mercer def. (3) Duke

Mercer busted several of the college nation’s brackets as it beat Duke 78-71. Wait, who beat Duke? Mercer won the Atlantic Sun conference this year by beating last year’s Cinderella-story Florida Gulf Coast in the conference championship game. Mercer’s roster is made up of seniors who have spent the past four years together, making the team’s chemistry high. Duke has a talented roster led by freshman Jabari Parker but couldn’t make the plays down the stretch to win the game. After the game, Parker was asked how he summed up his first year at Duke. He replied, “Incomplete.”

(11) Dayton steals the weekend

The Daily Dayton News mocked Ohio State on Friday after the Flyers were victorious against their in-state rivals. Dayton beat Ohio State 60-59 Thursday to open the NCAA Tournament. The Flyers didn’t stop Saturday as they beat a struggling Syracuse 55-53. Will the Flyers continue to the Sweet Sixteen? The Flyers will face the Stanford Cardinals, who sent the Kansas Jayhawks home. No one expected this matchup, but Dayton is looking to take the momentum from the past two games and keep the winning streak alive.

(8) Kentucky def. (1) Wichita State

Wichita State came into Sunday’s game with an undefeated record, which got them a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, while Kentucky has been scrutinized all season for underperforming.

Kentucky ended the Shockers’ winning streak with a 78-76 victory. Kentucky went to freshman forward Julius Randle, who had 13 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists. The Wildcats have shown a lot of improvement in the tournament and are playing like they can make a run at the Final Four. Kentucky’s size and athleticism are going to be hard for any team, including in-state rival Louisville in a game that will have a Final Four feel to it. It will be two great coaches — Rick Pitino from Louisville and Kentucky’s John Calipari — meeting for the fourth time in the NCAA tournament.

(12) Harvard vs (5) Cincinnati

Harvard is known for its education and famous alumni, but now the basketball team is getting some national attention. The Crimson won an NCAA tournament game for the second straight year. Wesley Saunders led the team in scoring with 12 points and scored 11 points in the final two minutes as it came out with a win over Cincinnati 61-57. Cincinnati was one of the top teams in the American Conference, but in the NCAA Tournament, it’s one and done. Harvard then lost 80-73 in the third round against Michigan State.

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