March Madness 2011 has begun and, in the first game of this year’s college basketball First Four, the UNC-Asheville Bulldogs beat the UA Little Rock Trojans in overtime, 81-77.
Click here to learn more about UNC-Ashville
Click here to learn more about UA Little Rock
The First Four is the new format that the NCAA is using to allow three more teams the opportunity to get into the Big Dance. UNC-Asheville and UA Little Rock were competing for the right to play Pittsburgh in the NCAA Southeast bracket.
With the win, UNC-Asheville will be a 16 seed in and play the No. 1 seeded Panthers on Thursday afternoon.
CLICK HERE TO SEE PHOTOS FROM THE GAME
If the NCAA was looking to add a little excitement to the March Madness tournament, UNC-Asheville and UA Little Rock did not disappoint. After heading into half time leading by four, UA Little Rock fell to UNC-Asheville star player Matt Dickey. In the final 8:25, Dickey led his team to 14 of their final 18 points, including a 3-pointer that tied the game with 11 seconds left.
After Matt Mouzy missed a 3 with 2 seconds remaining, the game went into extra innings. J.P. Primm made five free throws in overtime and the Trojan’s Marlon Louzeiro missed two separate jump shots in the final eight seconds of the game to give UNC-Asheville the victory.
“We don’t have any quit in this team,” UNC Asheville coach Eddie Biedenbach said following the game.
Matt Dickey finished the contest with 22 points for UNC-Asheville (20-13). The Big South champions now prepare for their toughest game of the season against the Pittsburgh Panthers.
“We’re playing really good now and it feels good to go to the second round,” Dickey said.
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