Villanova Goes ‘Wild’ in 87-61 Defeat of Radford
(Pittsburgh,Pa) After getting the victory in the First Four Round over LIU Brooklyn Tuesday, it would be easy to think that the Big South Champion Radford Highlanders had a shot against the #1 ranked Big East Champion Villanova Wildcats, right? After all, it is March Madness, a time when Cinderella teams have pulled off upsets.
The Top Seed in the East bracket basically took Radford behind the woodshed and beat them senseless 87-61 rout in their First Round NCAA Tournament Game in the PPG Paints Arena. Villanova looked like the team that won the 2016 National Championship. The Wildcats appeared to be hungry and they ate Radford like it was their dinner.
“Good effort for us”
Said Villanova Head Coach Jay Wright
“A lot of credit goes to Radford. One of the advantages we have is that, you know when I was at Hofstra. I know how good these teams are, I can tell these guys…. Radford is scrappy, tough and made an ugly game.”
Guard Jalen Bronson led six Wildcats scoring in double figures. Bronson had 16 points, followed by Mikal Bridges (13), Eric Paschall (11), and 10 apiece from Omari Spellman, Phil Booth and Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree.
— Villanova MBB (@NovaMBB) March 16, 2018
The Highlanders actually made the first punch of the game jumping out to a 3-0 lead thanks to a 3-pointer from Christian Bradford, but their lead was short-lived as Villanova got a 3-pointer from Phil Booth. The Cats basically took it from there as they went on an impressive run leading Radford 31-8 with over 8 minutes left in the first half. The Highlanders tried to answer , but could only get as close as 44-23 as Both teams went into the locker room at the half.
The Wildcats took total control in the second half, leading by as much as 60-29 and 70-37 and sealed deal with their 26 point victory ( 87-61).
RECAP: Radford’s historic 23-win season comes to an end after falling to No. 1 Villanova, 61-87, in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament
— Radford Men’s Hoops (@RadfordMBB) March 16, 2018
Guard Donald Hicks led Radford with 13 points as they now head home after an incredible season which included their First Four Victory.
“First of all, all praise and glory go to God.”
Said Radford Head Coach Ron Jones
” You know, He blessed me with being a par of this team of young men. It’s just been the most fin year I’ve had in coaching…… Really proud of this group and proud of what they accomplished. They’ve done things that will leave probably the best legacy of any seniors in the history of Radford Basketball at the Division I Level, and I’m very proud of them for that.”
Villanova will now take on 9th seeded Alabama in the Second Round on Saturday. The Crimson Tide beat Virginia Tech 86-83.
“We’re getting better every time we get to play.”
“You play different teams, different styles. And that’s what you have to be able to adjust to. We’ll get a totally different style on Saturday. And we’re going to have to be ready.”
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