Unexpected results in NCAA tournament
Upsets and ruined brackets were the major scenes during the first rounds of the NCAA tournament, which led to the surprise ending in which University of Connecticut (UCONN) walked away with the win.
The NCAA game on April 7 featured a seven seed Connecticut and an eight seed Kentucky. This tournament contained many upsets – most of the fans that filled out brackets were way off with their predictions.
The results of the tournament were rather surprising to sophomore Wes Koral, a member of the UIS basketball team. Koral stated that, “I did not expect UCONN to win the tournament. I thought that a higher seed – Michigan State or maybe even Ohio State – would have a better chance of winning than UCONN. I guess guard play really matters in the tournament.”
The match-up between UCONN and Kentucky was a close game up until the end. UCONN held the lead for most of the game and gained leads of up to 15 points. The first half saw the largest lead by UCONN.
Kentucky was able to lower their deficit towards the end of the first half and ended it with a 35-31 lead by UCONN. Kentucky fought hard throughout the full 40 minutes, but had to succumb to UCONN in the end. The final score of the game was 60-54.
UCONN finished the season with a record of 32 wins and eight losses. Kentucky went into the game 29-10 and then added another loss to their record.
Since both teams were seeded seventh or higher, the outcome of the tournament was rather surprising for many fans. Two teams with seemingly better chances, according to their records, were Florida State and Wichita State. Wichita State finished the season with only one loss.
“I was rooting for Wichita State – in high school I got to actually play with one of their players. I think they were a sleeper and I always want to see an underdog win,” explained Koral.
While Wichita got knocked out early, Koral was still excited about the results of their season. He stated, “They ended up getting knocked out in the second round. They got beat by Kentucky. They still made history because they were the first team in a long time to have that type of record.”
Wichita State ended their season with a 35-1 record and placed seventh at the end of the tournament. Florida State finished third and finished with a 36-3 record.
After Wichita’s loss, Koral did not end up rooting for another team. However, he did explain that, “I liked to watch UCONN play. I liked Kentucky too and Louisville.”
The effect of the multiple upsets on brackets was felt by Koral as well. “My bracket was okay – a lot of the sleepers knocked my bracket out,” said Koral. Adding, “Teams like Mercer really harmed my bracket, along with Wichita State.”
The championship game was very entertaining, with many highlights and a close final score of 60-54 in favor of Connecticut.
The University of Connecticut is 4-0 in national title games, but this was the lowest seed they have ever been when coming out on top. In the other years of their titles, they have been a one, two, and three seed.