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UD men's hoop team sparks March Madness in Newark

Quinn Kirkpatrick
Delaware Public Media

The University of Delaware men’s basketball team earned an NCAA tourney bid Tuesday night, and the UD community is rallying behind them.

Tuesday night’s 59-55 win against the UNC-Wilmington gave the Hens the Colonial Athletic Association title and punched their ticket to the NCAA Tournament.

Senior Daniel Julis is among those savoring UD’s first trip to the Big Dance in 8 years. He says the narrow title game victory made it even more exciting.

“Literally the second it happened I saw everyone posting on all social media that Delaware was a basketball school now, that Delaware finally won, that a school that hasn’t been in the tournament since I think 2014 finally made it in, and that we were 5th seed,” Julis said excitedly. “It was just such great school pride. I’m so proud of all the players and the team.”

Senior Erik Wujcik called Tuesday night’s victory for UD’s student radio station, WVUD.

He was in 8th grade when UD last reached the Big Dance and says being part of this piece of Hen history was one of the greatest experiences of his life.

“They came in as an underdog, as the number five seed out of the nine teams that were in the tournament so they were able to pull off some miraculous upsets beating the number one seed on Monday, and then obviously number two last night to secure the title,” Wujcik explained.

It’s only the 6th time UD has reached the NCAA tournament.

Wujcik says he knows the road only gets tougher from here with UD likely to face one of the top 10 teams in the country in the NCAA Tournament.

The Hens learn which basketball giant they’ll face this Sunday - Selection Sunday - when the full 68-team bracket is unveiled at 6pm.

Quinn Kirkpatrick was born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware and graduated of the University of Delaware. She joined Delaware Public Media in June 2021