Princeton Shocks #2 Seed Arizona Wildcats – March Madness Round One
March Madness Betting was in full swing on Thursday when the No. 15 seed Princeton Tigers upset the No. 2 seed Arizona Wildcats 59-55 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. It was the third consecutive year in which a No. 15 seed had upset a No. 2 seed, following Saint Peter’s victory over Kentucky in 2022 and Oral Roberts’ win over Ohio State in 2021. This was the 11th time in the history of the tournament that such an upset had occurred.
The game was decided in the final minute when Arizona guard Kerr Kriisa missed a 3-pointer that would have tied the game. Princeton was then able to secure the victory from the free-throw line. Tosan Evbuomwan led Princeton with 15 points, while Azuolas Tubelis scored 22 points for Arizona, and Oumar Ballo contributed 13 points and 12 rebounds.
Princeton’s defense played a key role in the upset, limiting Arizona’s high-powered offense to just 55 points, the lowest total of the season. The Wildcats made only three 3-pointers in the game, their lowest tally of the season, going 0 for 6 from beyond the arc in the second half.
With the loss, Arizona is now 6-2 all-time as a No. 2 seed in first-round games and is the only program to lose twice against a No. 15 seed in the first round. This victory was Princeton’s first in the NCAA Tournament since 1998, and they will now face the No. 7 seed Missouri in the second round on Saturday.
Princeton University has a long and storied history in men’s college basketball. The program has been in existence since 1901 and has enjoyed periods of great success throughout its history.
One of the most notable periods of success for Princeton basketball was during the 1960s and 1970s under the leadership of head coach Pete Carril. Carril, who coached at Princeton from 1967 to 1996, is widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball minds in the history of the sport. During his tenure, he led Princeton to 13 Ivy League championships and 11 NCAA Tournament appearances.
One of the most memorable moments in Princeton basketball history came during the 1996 NCAA Tournament. As a 13th seed, the Tigers upset fourth-seeded UCLA in the opening round of the tournament, thanks to a last-second backdoor cut and layup by guard Gabe Lewullis. The win was a major upset and helped put Princeton basketball on the map.
In recent years, Princeton has continued to be a competitive program in the Ivy League and has made several appearances in the NCAA Tournament. In 2011, the Tigers won the Ivy League and earned a 13th seed in the NCAA Tournament, where they nearly upset fourth-seeded Kentucky in the opening round.
Overall, Princeton basketball has a rich history and has been a consistent presence in the NCAA Tournament over the years. With its tradition of strong coaching and disciplined play, the program is sure to continue to be a force to be reckoned with in the years to come.
Princeton was not regarded as a defensive powerhouse during 2023. However, they rose to the occasion during Round One on the biggest stage and matched Arizona in every aspect of the game. With this upset victory, March Madness Betting enthusiasts witnessed another exciting moment in the tournament’s history.
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