Dressed down; Alabama rolls over Pitino, Iona 68-55
This time, Pitino had his worst seed ever and second-seeded Alabama (25-6) was too much. Ad“I thought their kids came ready to play,” Alabama coach Nate Oats said. Iona forced 14 turnovers, and Alabama had trouble getting an open look for most of the first 30 minutes. Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough weapons to beat Alabama.”Iona also got dominated 42-26 in rebounds, a stat Pitino said surprised him. Alabama is in the tournament with its best seeding in history, on the strength of its first SEC Tournament title in 30 years.
Pitino back in the NCAA Tournament with MAAC champs Iona
Asante Gist scored 18 points and Pitino took his record-tying fifth school to the NCAA Tournament with Iona’s 60-51 victory over Fairfield on Saturday in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament championship. Next stop, the all-Indiana NCAA Tournament. Gist’s absence was short-lived and he hit a 3 in his return to send the Gaels on their way to their fifth straight NCAA Tournament. Iona had completed a good run under Tim Cluess, who made six NCAA Tournament appearances and won five MAAC Tournament titles in nine seasons before stepping down for health reasons, when it hired Pitino. BIG PICTUREIona: Pitino joined Lon Kruger and Tubby Smith as the only coaches to take five programs to the NCAA Tournament.
March Madness? Pitino's whole 1st season at Iona maddening
Forced to pause four times this season because of the virus, once for nearly two months, the Gaels need to win their conference tournament this week to make the NCAA Tournament. When Iona hired the Hall of Fame coach last March 14, there was no celebration for the new biggest man on campus. We’re trying to make the best of it in very difficult times,” Pitino said. Perhaps things could’ve been different if the NCAA went with Pitino’s May Madness concept. Basketball-wise we’ll get through it and hopefully have a normal basketball season next year.”___More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/College-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25