NCAA Tournament bracket 2017: Virginia, Notre Dame survive tough first round tests

NCAA Tournament West Region Huggins

First round, West region; Buffalo, New York.; 12:15 p.m. EDT. Verne Lundquist, Jim Spanarkel and Allie LaForce will be on the call. This will be the opening game of the NCAA Men's basketball tournament proper following the First Four Round earlier this week, and will spark dozens of games to take place throughout the coming days.

The experience makes Notre Dame both vulnerable and risky. Princeton had not lost a game since way back on December 20. The other two meetings were a 35-22 Irish win in South Bend on December 31, 1927 and an 80-66 loss to the 13th-ranked Irish on December 7, 1974. Notre Dame is looking for their third straight Elite 8 appearance, and if Mike Brey's team wasn't ready to make that run, they must be awake now. "They've done that a lot, so I'm a lot calmer with this group because they've been poised in endgame situations". "And it's probably why we won the game", Brey said.

"I thought that shot's gone in an bad lot for us", Princeton coach Mitch Henderson said after the game. It didn't go in, we're here now, we have another chance to go on. At the same moment the Tigers, the 12th-seeded underdogs of the athletic-scholarship averse Ivy League, had found a way to put the ball in the hands of their most prolific three-point shooter. Princeton's Devin Cannady, who grew up in Mishawaka and was a Mishawaka Marian teammate of former Notre Dame guard Demetrius Jackson, missed a three-pointer with seven seconds left. Even as Notre Dame began to try and play quicker throughout the game, the Tigers were able to keep up offensively, never letting the Notre Dame lead stretch all that much. "We have great leadership that helps the younger guys understand what we do here". He reminds me a little of Hall of Famer Adrian Dantley, another 6-5 Notre Dame star who might have been the best post scorer ever for his size.

Princeton would build some momentum heading into the break based once again on their three point attack. Now, after a 60-58 loss, some Tigers were headed back to campus to write the exams they'd rescheduled in the name of the tournament. Seven years later, current Princeton coach Mitch Henderson played for Carril's 13th-seeded squad that scored a 43-41 first-round upset of defending national champion UCLA.

Pflueger took six stitches over his left eye.

"It was in the air a long time to me", Colson said with a smile in the victorious locker room. He hit several three-pointers early on, including one that tied the game at 11 with 12:47 to go, and netted himself eight points before the halfway mark of the first half. The Irish survived by making the little plays when they counted most-while turning it over only six times (the same number as Saturday night against Duke and fewest since the season opener in November). He came up big twice: on a short basket to make it 57-54 with 2:08 left, and with two free throws to make it 59-54 with 1:10 left.

Despite his injury, Colson was the best player on the floor.

Notre Dame improved to 26-9 and advanced to the second round, where it will play either No. 4 West Virginia or No 13 Bucknell.

Brey said associate head coach Rod Balanis would handle the bulk of the Princeton scouting this week.

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