March Madness recap

Lauren Crouch, Memorial Staff Writer

March is the time of college basketball where upsets and major blowouts are expected and 2019 has not been one to disappoint. The first round of gameplay began March 21, starting with many nail-biting games that came down to the final seconds, leaving many games with less than a five point difference in the final score.  

The tournament kicked off with Minnesota playing Louisiana and the former advancing to the second round. The BOK Center in Tulsa was one of the places where four teams started off the first round competing to survive where a packed house was to watch all the teams.

In the beginning of the second round, all the No. 1 seeds remained, unlike last year when the 2018 No. 1 seed, Virginia was beaten by No. 16 seed University of Maryland Baltimore County. They became the first No. 16 seed to win against a No. 1 seed in the first round in the history of the tournament. This year in the second round, only one higher seed team won their game which was No. 5 seed Auburn beating No. 4 seed Kansas which was not much of an upset.

For the first time ever in March Madness history, a perfect bracket remained going into the Sweet 16 which, if it stayed a perfect bracket after the championship game, the maker of the bracket would receive a million dollars. The bracket predicted that the teams in the Final Four would be No. 2 seed Kentucky, No. 1 seed Duke, No. 1 seed Virginia and No. 1 seed Gonzaga, with Duke winning their sixth National Championship in the finals. However, only one of those teams is advancing after the elite eight. After the Sweet 16, the perfect bracket was broken in the first game when No. 3 seed Purdue beat No. 2 seed Tennessee.

Within the first game, the elite eight defeats started when No. 3 seed Texas Tech pulled out the win after a close game against No. 1 seed Gonzaga. There were two overtime games to qualify into the final four, with an expected win from Virginia. The second game was won by Auburn, edging out Kentucky in the final seconds of the game, leaving many fans on the edge of their seats waiting for what the team is going to do next.

For going into the Final Four there was a close game between No. 5 seed Auburn and No. 1 seed Virginia, but Virginia slipped by the one point game in the final seconds. The game between #3 Texas Tech and #2 Michigan State with Texas Tech edging out the win. Texas Tech had the lead for most of the game with the final score having a ten point difference.

The championship game of the tournament was nerve racking for many fans especially when the game went into overtime where the No. 1 seed Virginia took home the championship title for the first time. Virginia has a fairly young team, so they hope to come back next year just as strong.

Contact Lauren Crouch at [email protected]