Buh-bye, Duke! The Blue Devils were bounced from the 2017 NCAA Tournament, losing to South Carolina in a shocking upset! That wasn’t the only March Madness shocker so get an update as to what went down in the second round.
What fans heard at the end of the March 19 game between the Duke Blue Devils and South Carolina Gamecocks was the sound of millions of brackets breaking. Duke, who just won the ACC Tournament and was considered a favorite to win March Madness, got smacked around by a No. 7 seeded team. Though Duke had a 30-23 lead at the end of the first half, South Carolina surged after halftime.
The Gamecocks shot for 71% from the floor, according to The New York Times. Suddenly, Duke was trailing by 10 with four minutes left. Despite the Blue Devils’ best attempts, they couldn’t put down the Gamecocks. South Carolina won, 88-81.
“When you shoot 7 for 35 in the first half and you’re down just 7 points, I tell you, it just gives you confidence,” Sindarius Thornwell, 22, a South Carolina player said. “It was our defense. It kept us in it. We thought we could win the game coming out the second half because of shooting so poorly the first half.”
That defense came through to pull off what may be the most shocking upset of the 2017 March Madness tournament. Prior to their victory over Marquette on March 17, South Carolina hadn’t won a NCAA tournament game since 1973. Now they go on to face Baylor on March 24.
Duke losing wasn’t the only major upset (so far.) Villanova, the 2016 NCAA Tournament champions and overall No. 1 seed, fell to the 8th seeded Wisconsin Badgers on March 18. Nigel Hayes, 22, scored a layup with 11.4 seconds left in the game to put Wisconsin ahead 64-62, according to NJ.com Villanova couldn’t recover, and when the final buzzer rang, the score was 65-62. This was the third time in four years that Wisconsin has eliminated a No. 1 seed, bouncing Arizona in 2014 and Kentucky in 2015.
On top of that, the No. 2 Louisville Cardinals fell to the No. 7 Michigan Wolverines. Michigan entered the second half down by 9 points, but Mo Wagner went on a run for the ages, scoring 26 points on 11 of 14 field goals. The Wolverines sent Louisville back to Kentucky, 73-69.
Do you think there will be any more shocking upsets in this tournament, HollywoodLifers? Are you surprised that Duke was eliminated?