March Madness Day 1 Highlight: First time’s the charm for Northwestern with very first NCAA tournament win

The Wildcats beat Vanderbilt 68-66.

It was 78 years in the making for this special moment and it didn’t come easy. 

Vanderbilt trailed by 15 points with less than 14 minutes left before going on a 28-12 run to lead Northwestern 62-61 with just over 1:30 left.

Northwestern was down by one with just under 18 seconds left in the game. Then, a baffling play occurred when Vandy’s leading scorer Matthew Fisher-Davis (22 points) purposely fouled Bryant McIntosh as he was dribbling up the court.

That automatically set up Northwestern with a chance to win the game with a pair of free-throws. McIntosh, who finished with 25, calmly handled the pressure and made both.

Vanderbilt failed to score when they got possession of the ball and it was official, Northwestern made history.

After the game, Fisher-Davis clarified to reporters that he didn’t know the score when he fouled McIntosh.

Former NBA coach Doug Collins got teary-eyed as he watched his son, Wildcats coach Chris Collins lead his team to the historic victory.

Northwestern will play top-seeded Gonzaga this Saturday in the second round of the West Region.

Photo courtesy Chicago Sun-Times

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Author: Helen Yee

Born and raised in Las Vegas, Helen was a former athlete for 10 years and a 2-time state champion swimmer. She produces and hosts Eyes On The Game Sports Radio, which airs on NBC Sports AM920 every Tuesday from 2-3pm PT. She loves sports and food (pizza is her favorite).

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