Checkmate! UMBC Retrievers of Baltimore oust the Virginia Cavaliers

#UMBC Retrievers defeat #VirginiaCavaliers in 2018 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament

Checkmate! UMBC Retrievers of Baltimore oust the Virginia Cavaliers

16-seed UMBC Retrievers guard Jairus Lyles celebrates beating 1-seed Virginia Cavaliers in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Tournament. Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County Men’s Basketball team (UMBC) held the ‘lowly’ place of 16th seed in the 2018 NCAA Basketball tournament and was cast off as ‘just another easy team to beat’—not anymore.

In the NCAA history, a #16 seed has never beaten a #1 seed. It will be 0-135 no more. U Must Be Cinderella (UMBC)! seems to be an appropriate acronym.

It was widely believed that no 16th seed was going to beat a number 1 seed and not the mighty Virginia Cavaliers of 2018.

The retrievers proved all the skeptics wrong. The revelry in the Charlotte’s Spectrum Center on Friday night (March 17, 2018), was a well-deserved celebration for the UMBC Retrievers after stunning the Virginia Cavalier 74-54. It was a great time in history amidst all the other ‘exciting’ things going on in Baltimore and the USA in general. As they move forward in the tournament, they will play against the 9th seeded Kansas State at 7:45 pm tomorrow.

In an article in the Baltimore Sun Coach Ryan Odom said, “Historic game. Unbelievable. So, proud of these kids.”   Read the complete article here

The sports world is in shock, an article ESPN by Ryan McGee  states:

“No, not when the 16s were 0-135 all time. Not when this 16 was arguably the weakest 16 in recent memory, having been pummeled only two months ago by Albany, 83-39.UMBC made the NCAA tournament by defeating Vermont in the America East title game via a buzzer-beater. Its first NCAA appearance in a decade came via the Retrievers’ first win over the Catamounts in 23 tries, snapping Vermont’s nation-leading 15-game winning streak.

No, not when the No. 1 wasn’t just a No. 1 seed, but the No. 1 overall seed, arguably the most ironclad No. 1 in years. Not when that No. 1 had nearly run the table in the ACC, regarded as the nation’s best conference, winning the regular season by four games and then running through that league’s conference tournament.”

When it comes to sports, UMBC is better known for its accomplishment in Chess. Athletically, the UMBC Retrievers have 19 NCAA Division I teams that participate in the America East Conference.

UMBC has won the Pan American Chess Tournament 9 times in 13 years (1996–2009). The school provides substantial chess scholarships to outstanding high school graduate players at the International or Grandmaster level. UMBC hosts two annual open chess tournaments, the UMBC Open (March) and the UMBC Championship (September).

More about UMBC

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County is a public research university, located in Baltimore County, Maryland, United States, mostly in the community of Catonsville.

Its Fall 2016 enrollment of 13,640 students and is better known for chess and research.  It has 48 undergraduate majors, over 60 graduate programs 36 masters, 24 doctoral, and 17 graduate certificate programs and the first university research park in Maryland.

UMBC was established as a part of the University of Maryland System in 1966. UMBC has been named the #1 Up-and-Coming University for six years in a row, since 2009, by US News & World Report. In addition, US News & World Report has placed UMBC in the top ten for best undergraduate teaching six years in a row, being placed at #5, the second highest-ranked public university.

UMBC has the fourth highest enrollment of the University System of Maryland, specializing in natural sciences and engineering, as well as programs in the liberal arts and social sciences.

By Karl A. Haughton

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