It may be April but there’s still room for some March Madness.
American sports fans lost their collective minds on Sunday (AEDT) over the jaw-dropping ending to a blockbuster college basketball game between the University of California, Los Angeles and Gonzaga in the national championships.
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The prestigious NCAA tournament is a huge deal in the States and rivals the NBA for interest at this time of year — as 68 elite college teams compete in a knockout competition for the right to be crowned the best university team in the country.
We were down to the Final Four on the weekend and much of the US had its eyes glued to the TV as Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs nailed an astonishing buzzer-beater to book the Bulldogs’ place in the championship game.
A lay-up saw UCLA tie the scores at 90-90 with 3.3 seconds remaining as the game looked destined for overtime. But an inbounds pass found Suggs, who charged up the court before hurling a speculative Hail Mary from just beyond halfway.
The buzzer sounded after Suggs got his shot away and incredibly, the ball sailed into the basket for a miraculous three-pointer to seal a 93-90 win.
“Unbelievable,” one commentator repeated. “Oh my god.”
JALEN SUGGS SENDS GONZAGA TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP 😱@ZagMBB#FinalFourpic.twitter.com/Ier1HcwjpH
The victory means Gonzaga remains unbeaten across all competitions this season and will be looking to put the icing on the cake against Baylor in the final.
Incredible photos emerged of the moment Suggs drained his shot and of the wild aftermath.
Great form.Source:Getty Images
The Bruins’ desperate block couldn’t stop Suggs.Source:Getty Images
It’s about here Suggs starts to think he might actually have a chance.Source:AFP
America reacts to wild ending
Like the commentators, viewers couldn’t believe their eyes.
LA Lakers star LeBron James tweeted: “OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
“I said SUGGS about to hit this as soon as he crossed half court. GAME!!
“One of the best games I’ve seen in a very long time.”
Former tennis player turned analyst Patrick McEnroe called it “insane”, CBS Sports said “We’ll be watching this shot FOREVER” while Sports Illustrated called it a “game for the ages”.
Sports business reporter Darren Rovell wrote on Twitter: “Oh my god.
“Start to finish, this might have been the greatest game in NCAA Tournament history.”
Pro golfer turned Instagram influencer and podcaster Paige Spiranac simply said “holy s**t” while football writer Grant Wahl wrote: “My god. Thank you, basketball.”
Former NRL star Pat McAfee added: “WOWWWWWWWWWWW. WHAT A MOMENT.”
American sportscaster Chris Fowler tweeted: “OHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! WHAT. A. FINISH!!
“How many better NCAA games ever?! 19 lead changes. I’ve seen 40 yrs worth. Never gonna forget this one.”
Sports writer Peter Schrager added: “That was the best sporting event in 14 months. Feels good.”
Suggs became an instant hero.Source:Getty Images
This is my house.Source:AFP
He’ll be dining out on this moment for the rest of his life.Source:Getty Images
The Bulldogs are going all the way to the final.Source:Getty Images
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