VCU celebrates as Dayton leaves the court. David Jablonski/Staff
Sunday was not exactly the fun day I thought it would be. Crazy, long, hard, shocking, those words might better describe it.
The Flyers lost 71-65 to VCU in the A-10 final and then lost again when the NCAA handed them a No. 11 seed in the NCAA tournament and a date with Boise State in the First Four in Dayton.
In the next few days, this will be spinned as a good thing as the team looks at the bright side: a tournament game on a court where they haven’t lost in more than a year and potential games just down the road in Columbus against teams that aren’t unbeatable (teams that aren’t Kentucky). That’s all true. The downside is despite all the Flyers did this season, it was the very last at-large team selected.
Obviously, the losses to Duquesne and La Salle hurt, and Texas A&M falling out of the tournament picture in recent days didn’t help. Still, Dayton won 25 games, had an RPI under 30, beat a No. 7 seed (VCU) on the road and finished second in the regular season and in the conference tournament. It’s hard to believe that’s only barely a resume of an NCAA tournament team.
Anyway, back to Sunday, and five things to take from the loss to VCU.
VCU celebrates. David Jablonski/Staff
1. VCU deserved this.
The Rams won four games in four days, beating three teams in a row in the final three it had lost two a few weeks ago.
From my game story:
Briante Weber, the fallen leader of Virginia Commonwealth, stood in the middle of the court crying tears of joys as he leaned on his crutches. His teammates found him and embraced him. A team on the cusp of an Atlantic 10 championship two years in a row finally ascended the ladders Sunday at the Barclays Center and cut down the net.