Flagrant Fouls

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Big East Tournament: Session 6
Greatest Game in Big East History

I refuse to even mention the Pitt-West Virginia game in this entry as I just witnessed the greatest game in the history of the Big East Conference.

Thank god this is a written entry because I’ve got no voice left after perhaps the most emotional night of 2009. When the game ended and people partied in the halls, you would have thought the recession had just ended. Being at that game was a privilege and an honor that I will never forget.

The first half was a high tempo, up and down affair. The cuse looked determined to get to the rim despite the presence of 7″3 Hasheem Thabeet. The crowd was into this one from the opening tip, as Syracuse and Connecticut fans made the short drive into NYC for the contest. Midway through the first half, a fight broke out one section over from where I was sitting. The ushers rushed over to break it up, but this New York City thug was determine to finish what he started. It took about 10 ushers to finally get this kid under wraps and he didn’t go quietly. One of the ushers (all 6″5 of him) actually put the kid in a sleeper hold and choked him out. This was a dynamite edition to an epic game. After trading hoops for much of the first half, Connecticut had the lead 37-34 at halftime. As we sat there at the half and talked about what it was going to take to beat the mighty Huskies, I don’t think anyone realized how this one was going to unfold.

A tie game with just 1.1 seconds left and needing to go the full length of the court, Paul Harris ran along the basline and delivered a strike to Eric Devendorf. Eric turned, fired, and hit what everyone thought was the game winning shot. The celebration amongst cuse fans was enormous and short lived, as the refs immediately turned to the scorer’s table to see if the basket was good. In what appeared to be too close to call, apparently the tie doesn’t go to the runner (or should i say shooter) in the Big East Conference. The refs waved it off and the epic 6 overtime thriller was on. As the overtimes went on and players began to foul out, it seemed as if this game was never going to end. The cuse trailed in all 5 extra periods but found a way to tough it out and make it’s way to an 6th period. In the 6th overtime (nearly 1:45 am), with Thabeet on the bench, Jonny Flynn worked the pic and roll to perfection and took the game over. The cuse ended up winning in the 6th Overtime by 10 points. As this game ended, everyone knew it was an instant classic. There was only one thing that could make this night any better.

Celebrating with Gerry MacNamara was a fitting way to end the most electric night in the gardens since #3 himself dazzled the crowd with all those buzzer beaters in 2006.

Nolan Shulman

Posted 2 weeks, 4 days ago at 6:10 AM.

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Big East tournament: Session 5

It was a dynamite double header at the gardens today, as Louisville started the party by showing everyone how, and why they were the regular season Big East Champs. Freshman sensation Samardo Samuels really put on an impressive display of talent and toughness. He had a monster stat line with 22 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. He shot 10-13 from the floor and really was truely impressive. Earl Clark was also big in the Cardinals win. He had 24 points, 10 Rebounds, and 7 assists. The two bigs really looked like future pros tonight. Providence was slower, smaller, and over matched. Their bubble didn’t burst tonight, but it did get a whole lot less comfortable. They will have to sweat out Selection Sunday and no longer control their own destiny.

The second game today was the game of the tournament thus far. Dwayne Anderson made a layup at the buzzer to give Villanova the win. The ball must have rolled around the rim about a dozen times before finally going down. It looked like the Wildcats were going to run Marquette out of the gym throughout the first half, but the Mountaineers hung tough and made it a very exciting game. The buzz in the Gardens was dynamite following the game, and everyone was ready to come back for the night session to see the backyard brawl, and the always exciting Cuse-Uconn match up.

Nolan Shulman

Posted 2 weeks, 4 days ago at 12:16 AM.

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