What an amazing thing that was to see UMBC beat Virginia on Friday night. Tons better stories have been written about what they accomplished, but I think it’s amazing that the 16-1 upset finally happened and it was an absolute dominating second half where the game was never really in any doubt over the last 10 minutes. That’s a special sports moment that I won’t forget any time too soon. Pity that they couldn’t keep it going with another upset tonight, but it was still an incredible moment in the history of the tournament.
Palace finally got things back in track, and with the team starting to get healthy again, I am a little more cautiously optimistic about their chances of staying up this season. I have never seen a team deal with so many injuries and rally over and over again. If the team does stay up Roy Hodgson should get all of the consideration for coach of the year. To take a team with 7 losses in their first 7, without scoring a goal in any of them, and do what he has done with them is a remarkable achievement. Hell, I would say that even if they don’t stay up. The talent that they have on the pitch right now though is a team that I don’t think anyone would want to face. Dan’s squad will see them next and things always seem to be entertaining when Liverpool comes to Selhurst… Crystanbul…. ahem.
Lastly, not sure how many people watched the Paralympics over the past week, but the sled hockey game between USA and Canada last night was an absolute classic. Both teams destroyed their competition through the opening rounds along with the semi-finals, showing speed that none of the opposing squads could even get close to matching. In the final though, both teams were so evenly matched and the conclusion of the 3rd period was edge-of-your-seat material as Canada hit the post on an empty net and the US team came back down the ice and tied the game with 30-some seconds remaining. The US won the game in OT but both teams would have deserved the gold for their performances. I said it last night on Twitter, but it would be amazing (for the sport, as well as for all fans) to see if someone could put together a best of 7 series between those two teams. It’s just a pipe dream, but I would be ecstatic if someone could put it together. Waiting 4 more years for these teams to get this kind of attention is way too far away.