The Holy Cross Crusaders defeated the heavily favored Lehigh Nighthawks in Bethlehem tonight to win their sixth ever Patriot League Tournament and subsequently punch a ticket to the NCAA Tournament next week. Malachi Alexander led Holy Cross with 26 points and nine rebounds as the Crusaders fought off a late second half rally.
Ready for the crazy part? Holy Cross was 13-19 (5-13 Patriot) during the regular season and was on a five-game losing streak entering the tournament, and now they’re headed to the big dance!
This will be Holy Cross’ first trip to the tournament since 2007 and first under head coach Bill Carmody, who spent 13 seasons at Northwestern before coming to the Crusaders. This is his first trip to the tournament since 1998, when he led Princeton to the second round.
Granted, Holy Cross’ record suggests that it is more than likely headed to a play-in game next week, meaning that there’s probably one more hurdle to clear before heading into the standard field of 64, but momentum is on the Crusaders’ side. At this point, it could be very hard to slow them down.
Be sure to stay tuned to Campus Sports for further updates from Holy Cross’ journey to the tournament!
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports