Thursday, March 16, 2017
Issue # 2.1.2 "Luck of the Irish"
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CERRITOS APT, CA (smt)- The day started off exciting with #12E-UNC Wilmington up by 15 and #12W-Princeton in a close game but in the end, #5E-Virginia woke up to win easily and the luck of the Irish was there a day early as the Tiger's lined up for an open three at the buzzer that just went long to give #5W-Notre Dame the victory After that everything continued to either go chalk with the exception of the consensus upset pick #12S-Middle Tennessee and #11W-Xavier. There were struggles as #1E-Villanova (only led by a point at halftime) and #1W-Gonzaga didn't get the routs they thought. #4S-Butler, #7W-St. Mary's, #3W-Florida St., and #4W-West Virginia won close games while #4E-Florida, #4MW-Purdue, #8E-Wisconsin, #2W-Arizona, and #5MW-Iowa St. won in double-digits.
The most bizarre ending was after going up by 1, #9W-Vandy's Matthew Fisher-Davis thought they were down 1 and intentionally fouled #8W-Northwestern giving them two free throws with 15 seconds left. Though a huge brain fart, that didn't lose the game for them. Northwestern still had to make two free throws which they did and Vandy had 15 seconds left. A badly drawn three-pointer missed badly and Northwestern, who waited 78 years to play their first tournament game, is now 1-for-1. NW won the game like the New England Patriots won the Super Bowl. Atlanta made dumb mistakes but NE still had to go down the field twice and convert two two-point plays. Vandy had 15 seconds left and took a bad shot. That's what lost the game.
The ho-hum day meant that we had a record six entries go a perfect 16-0. We only had six in the previous 22 pools. and only two of those ended up winning money. Air Fabone 23, Bobby Cee Racer, Hrosen2, Nwspring1, The Gambler, and The Swami go into the history books. Scott T has done it back-to-back years and is the first person to do it twice. Of course, last year, he finished 7th which was out of the money so a strong start is not indicative of success, money-wise. There 15 others right behind at 15-1. Fefe had a bad day, going 9-7.
We unofficially have a record 178 entries, topping 2015's record by 17. By going over 175 entries, we will have 7 money spots instead of six. We started off very strong despite not getting the Web Entry up until Monday morning. We shattered the record with 26 entries on Monday (was 20 (2013 & 2016)) and 57 on Tuesday (was 42 in 2014) to have 83 with a day and a half to go (was 60 (2014)). Although the pace slowed, in the end, 178 entries from a record 125 people were received (was 113 in 2015).
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Tids & Bits - A record 27 people entered twice (was 26 (2015)) and 13 entered three times (was 11 (2015))... better seeds won 14 of 16... only two games decided by 3 or less points... Arizona hit the 100 point mark... both WCC teams won (Gonzaga, St. Mary's)... we have 14 new people in the pool while 11 are trying a 2nd or 3rd entry for the first time... #11 seeds now 11-10 since 2002 while #12 seeds are now 11-12... this is 13th straight year a #11 has won... 30 picked UNC to win it all while 28 chose Villanova and 25 Gonzaga... 16 picked UCLA to win their first title since our first pool in 1995... Craig H was the only one to go 4-0 to win the 7th HWCI NCAA First Four for Charity...
Went perfect on the first day last year: 16-0 and ended up with nada in the end; will history repeat? ...