Friday, March 16, 2012

U.C. Shows Belief and Experience

With under four minutes to play Cincinnati found itself in a tie game. This, after blowing a 19 point lead in the second half. As the U.C. players looked around for answers, they found veterans ready to make big plays. A steal by Sean Kilpatrick, a score by Yancy Gates, a nice drive and layup by Cashmere Wright, then a jumper by Gates to give the Bearcats a 6 point lead over the Texas Longhorns with just over one minute to play. The players say they never panicked, but JaQuon Parker admitted after the game he would be lying if he said he didn't breathe a sigh of relief. Parker was quick to point out that U.C. is prepared for moments like the one it faced Friday. "Battle tested" is what head coach Mick Cronin calls his bunch. They maintain that the rigors of the past two months has them ready for anything, especially tight ball games. As Parker says, it's not often you have a 19 point lead in the Big East. So, should U.C. fans worry that the Bearcats lack a killer instinct to put teams away? Not so fast says Cronin. He maintains Texas is loaded with talent and capable of making the kind of run the Longhorns made in the second half of Friday's game. Cronin also reiterated his belief that he has a team equipped to win in the tournament. Cronin believes. His players believe. Belief and experience can be huge in the NCAA Tournament. That belief and enough experience carried the Bearcats past a Texas-sized comeback on Friday.

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