A dark cloud of distractions loomed over the Yale Bulldogs all week as they prominent storyline of the week was the expulsion of captain Jack Montague for an alleged sexual assault. The Bulldogs parted those clouds today winning their first ever NCAA Tournament game 79-75 over fifth-seeded Baylor.
Makai Mason is March's early hero as the sophomore guard posted a career-high 31 points, six rebounds, and four assists. Most importantly, Mason was 11-for-11 from the free throw line where he sealed the victory for the Ivy League champs.
Mason was Yale's MVP but this magical sweater also likely played a role in the Bulldogs win:
when my sweater costs more than your house pic.twitter.com/LLOkMGYcf1— Mike Tunison (@xmasape) March 17, 2016
Justin Sears also had a solid afternoon for the Bulldogs and showed the nation why his game should be talked about more. Sears finished with 18 points, four rebounds, and three assists.
Yale went into halftime up 39-34 and looked like they were going to have a stranglehold on the victory when they expanded their lead to 13 with just about seven minutes to play. Baylor came charging back and after Nick Victor air balled a free throw with six seconds left had a chance to tie the game. Instead, Lester Medford lost control of the ball on the offensive end, and Brandon Sherrod sealed the four-point win for Yale.
This is the second year in a row that Scott Drew's Bears have lost at the hands of a mid-major, as last year Georgia State knocked off the Bears in one one of March's signature games.
Yale will now face off with Duke on Saturday, and the Blue Devils and Bulldogs will not be strangers. Yale lost in Cameron Indoor 80-61 way back in November. James Jones probably feels his chances are better in the friendly confines of the Dunkin Donuts Center on Saturday.