LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Leading by as many as 16 points in the second half, the Iona Gaels, under first-year head coach, Rick Pitino, went on to defeat Fairfield 60-51 to earn the MAAC’s automatic bid to the NCAA tourney.
Pitino becomes on the third coach in college basketball history to take five different teams to the NCAA tournament. The other teams he took to the NCAA’s are Louisville, Kentucky, Providence and Boston University. The other two coaches to accomplish the feat are Lon Kruger and Tubby Smith.
Iona, which was affected greatly by Covid with lengthy pauses during the season, will bring a record of 12-5 into the N CAA tourney.