Villanova Wins Again

The Wildcats celebrate after winning another national title.

Mike Lopresti

The Wildcats celebrate after winning another national title.

Wyatt Buller

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On March 2, 2018, the Villanova Wildcats took on the Michigan Wolverines in the NCAA championship game in San Antonio. Villanova defeated Michigan 79-62 giving them their second national title in three years.

What looked like a competitive, fun game for the first 10 minutes was suddenly a showcase for the Wildcats. At one point, Michigan had built up a 7-point lead. This fell quickly and Villanova managed to create their own lead. The Wildcats led by as many as 22 points and ended up winning by 17.

The AP player of the year, Jalen Brunson, only finished with 9 total points. However a bench player for the Wildcats named Donte DiVincenzo had a career night. DiVincenzo scored a surprising 31 points off the bench. Brunson played only 29 minutes due to foul trouble. DiVincenzo played nearly the entire game, racking up a total of 37 minutes.

DiVincenzo also earned the Most Outstanding Player award because of his standout performance. One of Donte’s teammates, Jalen Brunson, had this to say about his performance, “He’s worked so hard to make himself the best player he can be every day. Honestly, this is nothing special — excuse me, this is very special, this is nothing surprising for us. We’ve seen Donte do this multiple times this year.”

Villanova won five games in the tournament this year. The Wildcats won each game by double digits, covered every spread and now have become just the fourth team since 1975 to win two national titles in a three-year span. Head coach for Villanova, Jay Wright, who now joins an exclusive and prestigious list of coaches who have won multiple national championships. Wright is one of only three active coaches to make such a claim, the other two being Mike Krzyzewski and Roy Williams.

This has not just been NCAA Tournament success for Jay Wright and Villanova; over the last four years, the Wildcats have totaled 136 wins to go with two national titles and three Big East Tournament titles. Jay Wright and his Wildcats are on pace to becoming one of a few basketball dynasties in NCAA history.

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