Huge crowd welcomes home national hoops champion Cavaliers
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Virginia’s national champion men’s basketball team is back on campus and when the Cavaliers returned, they were greeted by a throng of several thousand fans.
The Cavaliers won their first men’s basketball national championship on Monday night, defeating Texas Tech 85-77 in overtime in Minneapolis.
The crowd Tuesday chanted “U-V-A, UVA” as police motorcycles escorted the busses carrying the team into the parking lot of John Paul Jones Arena. The players and coaches walked down a path set off by barricades, high-fiving fans on their way to a podium. Virginia post player Mamadi Diakite drew huge cheers when he got off the bus holding the national championship trophy high above his head, and the crowd chanted “Tony, Tony” when coach Tony Bennett emerged.
Bennett the addressed the crowd, saying, “I guess this really happened. We won the national championship.” And fans erupted again.