It will be hard to top the amazing basketball from yesterday’s NCAA Tournament opening day, but it looks like we’re well underway. In the first game of the day, Atlantic Sun champion Mercer took out ACC power Duke, 78-71. Mercer withstood an impressive barrage of three pointers from the Blue Devils, especially from guards Quinn Cook (7-of-10) and Rasheed Sulaimon (5-of-12).
Mercer took a 65-63 lead on two Jakob Gollon free throws with 1:55 remaining in the game, and never relinquished despite a few more big shots by Cook and Sulaimon.
Jabari Parker and Rodney Cook, who figured to have a huge advantage in athleticism over Mercer, combined for 20 points on 6-of-24 shooting.
After the game, the Bears did a lot of celebrating, between a team dance circle, and coach Bob Hoffman exclaiming “praise the lord!” during a post-game interview.
Mercer will face the winner of today’s UMass-Tennessee game.