St. Peter’s makes it 3 upsets in a row with win over Purdue, 1st 15 seed heading to Elite 8


The St. Peter’s men’s basketball team made it a three upsets in a row on Friday, scoring an exciting victory over the Purdue Boilermakers, making them the first 15 seed in the March Madness tournament to ever to make it to the Elite 8.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Heading into last night’s matchup as 13-point underdogs, the Peacocks relied on steady scoring from stars Doug Edert and Daryl Banks III down the stretch, along with tough defense, to secure a 67-64 victory against their third-ranked rivals.

The team also nailed 11 consecutive free throws, including seven from Edert, in crunch time to punch their ticket to the Elite 8, an incredible feat after entering the tournament with 1,000-to-1 odds to win it all, according to ESPN.

The offense was ice cold at times, shooting just 38 percent from the field and hitting just six three-pointers, but the Jersey City squad again showed they didn’t have an ounce of quit in them and made the necessary big plays in the clutch.

Their historic run began with a dazzling 86-79 upset over second-ranked Kentucky, followed by another convincing win over another Bluegrass State mainstay: toppling seventh-ranked Murray State 70-60.

The Peacocks will now return to the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia on Sunday to take on the North Carolina Tar Heel, who are ranked number 8 in the tournament.

St. Peter’s Head Coach Shaheen Holloway, a former Seton Hall basketball star who is certain to get many lucrative offers in the off season, put an exclamation point on the win in an interview on the court with CBS right after the game.

“What they gonna say now? Anybody got something to say? We can’t do this, we can’t do that, cinderella, underdogs,” he said.

“Listen, I got guys that just play basketball. I got a bunch of guys that just play basketball and have fun, that’s all we do.”

Local fans and college basketball historians alike noted that the game had added significance with Elnardo Webster, Sr., one of the team’s most prolific players of all time, passing on Tuesday.

The team wore t-shirts that said “Elnardo Webster Peacock Forever” to pay tribute to the star from the 60s star prior to the big game.

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