BY COLIN “BIG C” MACGUIRE
The Greenville Standard
Virginia won the 2019 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship over Texas Tech in overtime 85-77, a week ago Monday. In 2018, exactly 388 days earlier, Virginia suffered an embarrassing defeat in the 2018 NCAA Tournament.
Virginia was the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed. They faced University of Maryland – Baltimore County and lost by 20 points, 74-54. Instead of sulking they used the defeat as motivation.
In the 2019 Tournament, Virginia was a No. 1 seed again and faced No. 16 Gardner- Webb. At one point in the game, it looked like history was gonna repeat itself.
Gardner-Webb jumped out to a big lead. Virginia made a comeback to win 71-56. They then faced Oklahoma and won 63-51.
Next, Virginia won 53-49 against their Sweet 16 opponent, Oregon. In the Elite Eight, they faced Perdue and won 80-75 in overtime. Virginia had to hit a shot at the buzzer to force the game into overtime.
With the win, it was their First Final Four Trip since 1984. Their next opponent was Auburn who a number five seed. Trailing, 62-60, with time running out 62-60 freshman Kyle Guy attempted a 3-point shot and was fouled with 0.6 seconds left in the game.
Guy made all three shots. Auburn could not get a shot off.
Then Virginia faced Texas Tech for the National Championship. Virginia had to hit another shot to force overtime. Virginia won 85-77 to win its first national championship.
Virginia finished at 34-3. They rose up from the ashes in 2018 to win it all in 2019.