No. 15 seed Saint Peter’s Peacocks topple Murray State Racers as electrifying run rolls into Candy 16
INDIANAPOLIS — Saint Peter’s coach Shaheen Holloway mentioned from the beginning that he did not deliver his crew to Indianapolis for the primary two rounds of the NCAA match to only present up and lose.
Holloway was proper.
The Peacocks are headed to the Candy 16 for the primary time in class historical past after beating Murray State 70-60 on Saturday at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. The Peacocks will play the winner of Sunday’s sport between Texas and Purdue.
“I am simply proud that these guys get to play on a special sort of stage,” Holloway mentioned. “NCAA match is each child’s dream. Taking part in within the MAAC is a superb match — I imply a terrific league. We play on ESPN+. We do not get quite a lot of massive TV video games. So these guys get an opportunity to point out their expertise on the large stage. That is what I am pleased with. These guys labored so onerous for this second. I am simply pleased with them.”
Saint Peter’s, with an enrollment of about 2,300 college students, is the feel-good crew of the match to date. The Peacocks shocked No. 2 seed Kentucky within the first spherical after which led from begin to end in beating Murray State, which entered Saturday with solely two losses.
The Peacocks, who’ve the longest energetic successful streak in Division I at 9 video games, be a part of Florida Gulf Coast (2013) and Oral Roberts (2021) as the one No. 15 seeds to succeed in the Candy 16 for the reason that area was expanded to 64 groups in 1985.
Saint Peter’s will not have far to journey for his or her Candy 16 sport as a result of Jersey Metropolis, New Jersey, the place the varsity is situated, is simply about 90 miles from Philadelphia.
“So far as the Candy 16, once more, it is one other fast turnaround,” Peacocks guard Doug Edert mentioned. “And we’re not going to get too excessive. What we did is superb, nevertheless it’s already previously, and we have to maneuver on and begin making ready for the subsequent crew.”
In simply 4 seasons, Holloway has taken the Peacocks the furthest they’ve ever been within the match. A part of the reason being as a result of his gamers have taken on the mindset of their head coach. Holloway was a dogged participant who did not again down from anyone throughout his four-year profession at Seton Hall. He even beat out the likes of Kobe Bryant to win MVP of the McDonald’s All American Sport in 1996.
“That is how I performed, proper? I performed that method,” Holloway mentioned. “I performed to offer it 110% on a regular basis. I inform my guys on a regular basis, you give me 100%, I provides you with 200%. I used to be an honest participant. I am small. Folks counted me out. So I had one thing to show each time. So I coached that method … My factor is that this: It is a give-and-take factor. Should you give me onerous work on protection, I am going to allow you to play offense. That is us.
“Give me what I would like on protection, offense, you possibly can go on the market. You do not come out of the sport enjoying for me for making errors on offense. You come out of the sport for making errors on protection. That is simply how it’s.”
The Peacocks blocked seven pictures and held Murray State to 34.6% taking pictures and 19 factors under their season common in factors.
“I will say this. It’ll come off a bit of loopy. I obtained guys from New Jersey and New York Metropolis,” Holloway mentioned. “You suppose we’re terrified of something? You suppose we’re frightened about guys making an attempt to muscle us and hard us out?”