The Cincinnati Bearcats improved to 7-0 with a 58-56 win over the Alabama Crimson Tide this afternoon. UC was up 9 late in the first half before Trevor Lacey drilled a 3 to get the margin to 6. From there, it was nip and tuck the whole second half. The teams traded the lead numerous times. The Crimson Tide used their press to slow down the Cincinnati offense and put constant double teams on Sean Kilpatrick away from the ball. It worked because UC had trouble scoring.
Kilpatrick got the last laugh though, when he tied the game at 56 on a layup in the last minute. Alabama couldn't capitalize on their possession, giving the ball back to UC with around 7 seconds left. Mick Cronin called timeout and said (probably) "Get the ball to Cash, and Cash you score." That's exactly what happened. Cash got the ball, raced right to left on your radio dial, and hit a fall away jumper a couple feet outside the left box. It was a high arching shot that touched nothing but the bottom of the net. For some reason there was a review, which gives us this great gif. The shot stood. Cincinnati wins.
The atmosphere from the student sections today was absolutely tremendous. They made it seem like a big game. It was a big game, but they made it feel bigger. Can't tell them how much I appreciated that as a fan. The students have rocked it every game this season. The rest of you have to show up like you did today for the rest of the games. Over 10k were in the house. It was nice.
Also notable in the win were that Cashmere Wright and Sean Kilpatrick joined the 1,000 point club. They are the first teammates to do in a season since Danny Fortson and Darnell Burton. That is a long ass time ago. Cincinnati basketball back.
This win made me very happy. I'll have deeper thoughts on Monday after I can watch the first half, most of which wasn't shown on ESPN because of the
Big East Conference USA title game. Also, the announcer called Cheikh Mbodj, who played very well, Muh-ood-juh. It was very annoying. I was not a fan. That's a small complaint. Thank you, Cashmere Wright. Thank you, Bearcats.
Box score via SI