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The Cold Hard Truth: On Sports

Villanova and Carolina Don’t Disappoint

Villanova and Carolina Don’t Disappoint

BY Kevin Krest

@KevinKrest

There were a lot of people, me included, that not only hoped that last night’s NCAA Basketball Championship game would be a great game, but also felt strongly that it probably would deliver. It certainly did, most likely exceeding a lot of expectations in the process, and possibly becoming the best ever. Even before Marcus Paige’s acrobatic three-pointer tied the game with just shy of 5 seconds on the clock, the last six minutes were electric. The Tar Heels crawling back from what looked like an insurmountable deficit by doing something they aren’t known for doing well, making

Even before Marcus Paige’s acrobatic three-pointer tied the game with just shy of 5 seconds on the clock, the last six minutes were electric. The Tar Heels crawling back from what looked like an insurmountable deficit by doing something they aren’t known for doing well, making three-pointers. And Villanova grabbed that lead by dominating in the paint, something no one really expected them to do against a bigger UNC squad. But a play that was as key to the game as the winning jumper by Kris Jenkins was the four-point turnaround at the end of the first half.

With Carolina up by seven, they had a fast break opportunity that would have ended the half and given them a nine-point lead heading to the locker room. Instead, a block and a basket the other way allowed ‘Nova to get within five, a much different feel as they headed to the second half.

In terms of quality of play, I thought it was outstanding given the difficulty of the venue and the intensity of the game. I like that the officials in this year’s version of March Madness almost universally let the kids play, calling what seemed to be fewer touch fouls, giving the games a better flow and leaving the result to the players. Another positive was the preponderance of upperclassmen-laden teams in the Final Four.

Despite the lack of close contests in the semifinals, particularly Villanova’s historic beat down of Oklahoma, I still think it was a great tournament that resulted in a very worthy champion.

Congratulations to coach Jay Wright and his team!

 

[Photo: Ronald Martinez / Getty Images]

 

 

For more follow Kevin Krest on Twitter @KevinKrest and don’t forget to check out my new book, “Roughing the Passer – A PK Frazier Novel” and my first, “Illegal Procedure – A PK Frazier Novel”, available in print and e-formats at Amazon.com, iBooks and Smashwords.

Villanova and Carolina Don’t Disappoint

Villanova and Carolina Don’t Disappoint

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