In the greatest upset in the history of NCAA basketball, the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) Retrievers defeated the University of Virginia (UVA) in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The game, held in Charlotte North Carolina, saw the number-one ranked and top overall seed the Virginia Cavaliers shellshocked by a fearless UMBC, the American East champions. In the end, UMBC topped UVA by 20 points with a final score of 74-54.
The Cavaliers were cold throughout the game and their patented defense was a soft match for the Retrievers relentless offense. Senior Jarius Lyles, a former VCU transfer, led all scorers with 24 points and was nearly unstoppable in the second half. Joe Sherburne also made several three-pointers in a five-minute span to burst open the lead after halftime.
The injury of UVA’s dynamic 6-man Deandre Hunter was a warning sign earlier in the week and the Wahoos stalled throughout the game. UMBC won in a stunning fashion over Vermont to gain a spot in the tournament but against UVA they looked in total control.
As the game neared its end, UMBC turned up the heat by continuing to drain three-pointers from all parts of the court. This loss ranks amongst the worst in UVA history and will be remembered as one of the greatest upsets in sports history.