The Stanford Cardinal has had an up an down season which started with an outstanding non conference won loss record as they lost only 2 games and one was to Syracuse in the NIT Pre-Season Final 69-63. Then they went into conference play in the PAC12 and finished with 8 losses to finish 7th at 10-8.
They then went on to lose in the second round of the Pac 12 conference tournament. Then they went on a winning streak of 6 games to win the NIT in convincingly fashion over Minnesota by 24 points a team who had beaten Washington in Overtime two nites earlier in the other NIT semi-final game. Washington a team that finished first in the Pac 12 and was the first team ever to win a conference regular season conference and not get selected to go to the big dance.
I think that Stanford and Washington more than proved that they belonged in the big dance. Stanford is certainly better that at least half of the NCAA field of 68 that is for sure.
PLaying a stifling man to man defense the Cardinal trailed 21-17 mid way thru the first half only to go on a 12 point unanswered run to take a 29-21 lead and then lead 31-25 at the half.
Aaron Bright the best sixth man in the country came off the bench to spark the Stanford team again as he had done all tourney.
The second half was all Stanford as they lead by as many as 22 mid way thru the second half to finish with a 75-51 victory.
Stanford shot 50% from the floor on 29-58 FG’s while Minnesota could only muster 337% on 19 of 51. Stanford shot 46% from 3 point land and Minnesota shot just 23.1%. Stanford shot 73% from the line and Minnesota shot just 58% Minnesota had 13 Assists to 22 turnovers while Stanford had 17 assists and 16 turnovers.
Aaron Bright lead the Cardinal charge with 15 points and 6 assists while Williams 12 lead the Gophers.
It was a very physical game with lots of fouls being called to keep the game under control.
Aaron Bright was chosen the Outstanding Plasyer of the Tournament as the 6′)” sophomore from Washington was outstanding coming in off the bench to spark the Cardinal Charges each and every time he did enter the game.