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We’re Going Dancing: The Winthrop Eagles Are March Madness Bound



As the replay operator for this tournament, it has been a crazy and exhausting weekend. I’m sure everyone who came out to the coliseum to support could use a couple of days to recooperate, too. For those who didnt, let me give you a little recap. 

This past weekend, the Winthrop Eagles, as the number one seed, hosted the Big South Conference Tournament. On the first day of tournament play, the number 2 seed, UNC Ashville was eliminated by number 7 seed, Campbell University after their standout sophomore, Chris Clemons dropped 51 points, alone. Number 3 seed, Liberty was also knocked out in the first round by number 6 seed, Radford University. These were major upsets and good news for Winthrop, right? Thursday night, we faced Charleston Southern and beat them by a score of 92 to 78. 

We were moving on to to the semi-finals. 

If you were at the game on Friday night then you will understand why that game just about killed me. We just barely beat Gardner-Webb on Friday, after a late 3 pointer by Gardner-Webb and a missed 3 point attempt by Keon Johnson sent the game into overtime. We eventually won by a scored of 80-77. Number 7 seed, Campbell University beat Radford University by a score of 66-50. So you know what that means…

Winthrop (1) would face Campbell (7) in the Big South Conference Championship game.

At this point, I havent slept in like 4 days. I was wayyyy too excited to sleep…Anybody else?

On Sunday, at 1 o’clock, Winthrop and Campbell faced off on ESPN. This was big time yall. Almost a sold out coliseum, on national televsion, our boys were 40 minutes away from becoming the Big South Conference Tournament Champions and guarenteeing their 10th NCAA March Madness appearance. 

And they did just that. We won. 76-59

Keon Johnson scored 26 points and was named to the All-Tournament Team and tournament MVP (no surprise there!!!). 

Xavier Cooks had his 8th double-double in 9 games with 17 points and 14 rebounds and was named to the All-Tournament Team. 

Also, thank you Rod Perkins for showing up in the first half with your 15 points…we needed that. 

I want to give one big, giant, shoutout to the entire men’s basketball team on behalf of the entire Winthrop and Rock Hill community. You have made us so proud. We love you. 

I can’t even begin to describe how it felt to watch our fans storm the court and our team cut down the net. It was such a surreal experience. 

So yes, the boys may have played their last game at the coliseum until next season. But there is still more basketball to be played. 

Come out to the coliseum next Sunday, March 12 at 5:30 for the NCAA Selection Show to find out where our guys are headed! 

Congratulations once again to the Big South Conference Tournament Champs!

After 3 years of falling short, the Eagles have punched their ticket and earned the chance to dance!

photo from the Winthrop Eagles 


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