On Monday night the University of North Carolina took a 71 – 65 victory over Gonzaga to take home the NCAA trophy. This marks the sixth national trophy for UNC and the fourth time in a row a team has lost it’s Championship debut.
The night was one that many fans will forget with an abundance of foul calls leading to 56 attempted free throws and poor play all around. In an interview with ESPN, UNC coach Roy Williams said, “I don’t think either team played really well.”
That didn’t matter for the athletes though; Joel Berry II won most outstanding player of the tournament on what was an emotional night for him and the Tar Heels.
In an interview with the New York Times Isaiah Hicks said “It’s the best feeling I’ve ever felt,” and that “I haven’t cried like this in years.”
The emotion was also seen on the Gonzaga side with players feeling the pain of being close but not quite sealing the deal. Mark Few in an interview with the New york Times said, “It was a slug fest out there,” and “They did everything we asked them to.” Some players will have another shot next year, however for some it’s the end of the road.
Teams around the country will now look to next March when 64 teams will enter the tournament with hopes of feeling the elation the Tar Heels experienced Monday night.