Cinderella is a Spartan.
The Spartans of Norfolk State University versus the Tigers of Missouri University. 15 versus 2. Nobody versus Power.
I won't replay the game, but I will tell you this-- being on the floor during the last part of the second half was one the best if not the best basketball environment I've ever been present for.
The arena was packed, lots of Mizzou fans but more Kansas fans. Of course, they were rooting against the Tigers and for the Spartans. There were other indifferent fans, maybe locals, but they were pulling for an upset.
The crowd rocked so hard for Norfolk (Their awesome band helped). It was magical. NSU won and brackets were busted.
The team celebrated like there was no tomorrow, because for them there was no yesterday. It was Norfolk State's first tournament appearance. Ever. They'd never played a March Madness game before. Can they go up from here? The Spartans think so.
Halfway through the Saint Mary's game, this happened:
I love this for so many reasons. Listen to the reception these newly crowned kings get. Look at the uncontrolled smiles on these young 20-something's faces. They own the sports world at this moment.
My favorite moment is at the very end, this young girl is just one row behind the athlete. They're complete opposites-- He's in green and gold, she's in Jayhawk blue and red. But thanks to supreme effort on the court, their paths cross for these few moments. It's something neither of them will ever forget. And judging by the brilliance of their smiles and shine in their eyes, they wouldn't want to.