Thursday, March 28, 2013

La La Land: La Salle invades L.A.

This is the charm of the NCAA Tournament.

Every once in awhile, something totally unexpected happens.

Meet the La Salle Explorers.

They got into the tournament as one of the four teams who got last-second invites in what used to be called the "play-in" games.

Drive a couple hours outside of the Philly area, and even the most avid hoops fans are asking, "La Who?"

We know better. We know all about Tom Gola, Hubie Marshall, Kenny Durrett, and Lionel Simmons.

We smile knowningly as the nation learns all about the "Southwest Philly Floater." It's playground ball, and every neighborhood has its trademark move.

All the Explorers have done is win three games in five days. Today they are waking up in La La Land. No, that does not stand for La Salle. It stands for Los Angeles, where the Sweet 16 tips off tonight.

At this point there is no reason to believe La Salle can't beat Wichita State, a fairly formidable long shot in their own right.

But, really, are you going to bet against a small Catholic school on Holy Thursday?

Better plan on a nap this afternoon. The La Salle-Wichita State tip-off is slated for 10:17, and that is if the first game runs on time, which is dicey in itself.

La Salle carries with it the proud tradition of Philly basketball. I think they're up to the challenge.

Elite Eight here we come.

Go Explorers!

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