Men's Basketball's Championship Run to Elite Eight Checks in at #2 on UMW Top 10 for 2013-14

Top 10 Moments from UMW Athletics in 2013-14

#10: Tailgating returns
#9: Petrucelli's Monster Season Leads to 1st team All-America Honors
#8: Field Hockey Remains in National Spotlight
#7: Eagle Nation Day/Launch of Eagle Club
#6: Men's and Women's Swimming Continues Dominance at CAC Championships
#5: Men's and Women's Tennis Dominate CAC; Host NCAA Regionals
#4: Athletic Gala Brings Redskins Stars to Celebrate UMW Athletics
#3: Men's Lacrosse Enjoys Greatest Season Ever
#2: Men's Basketball Shoots Way to CAC Title, NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
#1: August 13

 

The UMW men's basketball team turned in its greatest season ever in 2013-14, winning a school record 25 games en route to the CAC Championship. Then, the Eagles won its first three NCAA Tournament games ever, advancing to one game from the Final Four.

Playing with a senior-laden roster that had advanced to the CAC Championship two years prior, the Eagles won six of their first seven games, setting up a matchup with 7th ranked St. Mary's College, the defending CAC Champions, who had advanced to the NCAA Tourney quarterfinals the year before. Trailing by one in the final seconds, Bradley Riester hit a three pointer to give UMW its first ever win over a top-10 ranked opponent.

Three days later, the Eagles hosted another top-10 team in Virginia Wesleyan, and the result was a second straight win, 95-87, in double overtime. The Eagles then won a pair of CAC games against York and Salisbury to jump to #17 in the nation.

After falling at nationally ranked Wesley by one point, UMW won six straight games, including a six-point win at St. Mary's. After dropping three straight, the Eagles closed the regular season with a pair of CAC wins to move to 20-5. CAC Tournament wins over St. Mary's in the semifinals and over CNU in the championship propelled the Eagles to their second CAC Tournament crown and NCAA Tournament appearance.

The Eagles steamrolled Springfield College by 20 points in the opening round, and then crushed DeSales, 77-49, in the second round, setting up a rematch with Virginia Wesleyan. UMW was chosen as host of the sweet 16 rounds, and before a sold-out crowd, once again defeated the Marlins, 74-70, before falling in the elite eight to eventual national runnerup Williams College.

Riester ranked second in the nation in three pointers made, and was joined on the All-CAC team by senior Dylan Farinet and junior Taylor Johnson, who won the CAC Medal of Inspiration medal after playing the entire year with two broken feet. Riester was a member of the VaSID all-state team, and Coach Rod Wood was named the state College Division Coach of the Year.