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And then there were four

Taking+place+in+Phoenix+Arizona%2C+this+year%E2%80%99s+Final+Four+proved+to+be+a+major+sporting+event.+Final+Fours+are+always+expected+to+bring+great+intrigue+to+college+basketball%2C+since+the+teams+that+survive+to+this+point+are+usually+unpredictable.
Taking place in Phoenix Arizona, this year’s Final Four proved to be a major sporting event. Final Fours are always expected to bring great intrigue to college basketball, since the teams that survive to this point are usually unpredictable.

Taking place in Phoenix Arizona, this year’s Final Four proved to be a major sporting event. Final Fours are always expected to bring great intrigue to college basketball, since the teams that survive to this point are usually unpredictable.

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Vimeo.com

Taking place in Phoenix Arizona, this year’s Final Four proved to be a major sporting event. Final Fours are always expected to bring great intrigue to college basketball, since the teams that survive to this point are usually unpredictable.

Seraphin Kibonge, Staff Reporter

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  March Madness never fails to surprise us. The NCAA Tournament is known for, well, its madness, and is virtually impossible to predict who will make it to the later rounds. However, through all of the smoke of upsets, buzzer beaters, and legacies created in March, four teams prevailed to play in April. This year, the teams were Gonzaga, South Carolina, Oregon, and North Carolina. Here is the scoop into each of the Final Four teams, starting with the teams already eliminated.

 South Carolina

 With a rookie head coach and total of four NCAA Tournament wins in their history, South Carolina was one of the last teams people expected to be in the Final Four, yet they were. Making their first appearance ever, a general theme in this year’s Final Four, South Carolina had a difficult journey. They had to go through Duke, Baylor, and finally Florida, before meeting up in the Final Four. Their physical defense and Sindarius Thornwell, their leading scorer, have carried this squad throughout their magical run. Had they kept going to their bread and butter- give the ball to Thornwell and get out of the way- they may have been able to pull out of Phoenix with a National Championship.

  Oregon

 Thought of as a one hit wonder after making the Elite Eight a year ago, Oregon returned to the Final Four for the first time since 1939 (the first year of the NCAA Tournament), where they won their first and only National title. Their leading scorer, sophomore Dillon Brooks, has been a borderline All-American ever since he stepped foot on Oregon’s campus. He was forced to carry the team on his shoulders, since he never received consistent help from his teammates. However, the NCAA tournament has been a revelation for backup Jordan Bell and Tyler Dorsey, and had the former boxed out, they would still be playing come Monday.

   Gonzaga

  After losing only one game all year long, Gonzaga was still underrated when it came to tournament time. Many fans believed that they did not even deserve a 1 seed, and rather Duke should have earned it instead. Well, we know how that looks now. Gonzaga makes their first Final Four appearance ever, and led by transfer Nigel Williams-Goss, they are looking to prove their doubters wrong. Do not sleep on Gonzaga this time around.

  North Carolina

  The proven commodity of the four, North Carolina, is seeking for vengeance after last year’s National Championship game, where they lost in heartbreaking fashion – a Kris Jenkins buzzer beater. UNC has been to an NCAA record 20 Final Fours, while the rest of the field has a combined 3 Final Four appearances. Even though UNC lost two top seniors from a year ago, they returned a team just as deep this year, from All-American Justin Jackson all the way down to Elite Eight hero Luke Maye. With the amount of experience and extra motivation from last year, North Carolina is not going to be an easy matchup for anybody.

  Prediction: Gonzaga vs UNC Title Game

  Even with Gonzaga’s #1 defense and talent, I still have to go with North Carolina to take it all. I believe with their experience and motivation to not disappoint this year, they are definitely the team to beat. As junior Graham Watkins says, “I think UNC is playing the best basketball at the right time. They’re definitely they’re my favorite to win it all if they continue to play like that.” However, little in the tournament goes as planned, so we can only wait and see.

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The student news site of Millbrook High School
And then there were four