The 2019 NCAA March Madness basketball tournament took place this month and was full of surprises. The tournament showed off some under-the-radar players, such as the 7’6 Center out of UCF Tacko Fall finally being able to show off their skills. Other popular players, such as one of the best duos in basketball, R.J Barrett and Zion Williamson out of Duke, were able to continue their dominance. There were also many upsets and buzzer beaters,such as the 13th ranked Murray State, led by star point guard Ja Morant, defeated the 2nd ranked Marquette by a score of 83-64. Many peoples’ brackets were ruined all over the world, and others remained with the perfect bracket.
One of the teams that was predicted to go all the way, Duke, was eliminated by the unexpected Michigan State. Duke was barely winning games by one point, barely beating UCF at the last second. Michigan State, on the other hand, lost in the semifinals to Texas Tech, who is now in the finals. The other semifinal game, Auburn vs Virginia, ended in major controversy. In the final two seconds of the game, Virginia, who were down by two, passed the ball inbounds for a three point shot, but the player was fouled and given three free throws to try and win or tie the game. Many people believed the player who shot the ball double dribbled before the ball was shot, making the foul not count, but it was never called. The player made all three free throws, putting Virginia in the lead with 0.6 seconds left. Auburn missed the last shot and Virginia was in the finals against Texas Tech.
Finally, in the National Championship Game, which pitted Virginia against Texas Tech to decide who would end the season on top, Virginia held a solid lead for much of the game until Texas Tech was able to tie the game in the fourth quarter. In the final 30 seconds, Texas Tech was able to gain a three point lead, until Virginia was able to hit an open three to tie the game with 22 seconds left. Texas Tech got the ball back but were denied any points, making the score 68-68 and going into overtime. Virginia dominated Texas Tech in overtime and were able to take home the National Championship after being embarrassed last year. The two most outstanding players during the game were Kyle Guy, who won Most Outstanding player during the Final Four, and De’Andre Hunter, who had 27 points and 9 rebounds.
All in all, this year’s NCAA March Madness was one to remember. Congratulations to Virginia for winning the March Madness tournament after not winning it all last year. Many people are left in happiness, sadness, and disappointment, but you have to respect Virginia for their win.