After shocking wins over higher-seeded Kentucky and Murray State, Saint Peter's continued its magical NCAA Tournament run with a 67-64 victory over No. 3 seed Purdue in the Sweet 16 on Friday. To make the Peacocks' upset even more amusing: March 25 is National Peacock Day.
Saint Peter's trailed for most of the second half but rallied ahead when it mattered most, taking a 59-57 lead with 2:16 to go thanks to a jump shot from Daryl Banks III. Purdue trailed by three with as many seconds remaining, but Jaden Ivy missed the potential game-tying 3-pointer. As a result, Saint Peter's becomes the lowest seed to reach the Elite Eight in the tournament's history, surpassing the run Missouri made in 2002 as a 12-seed.
The upset sparked countless reactions from the sports world, most notably from an NBA superstar whose college squad lost to Saint Peter's in this tournament: Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant. Morant, a former Murray State standout, saw his Racers take a 70-60 second-round loss to the Peacocks, but he still seems to be fan of their Cinderella run.
st. peter's 👀👀— Ja Morant (@JaMorant) March 26, 2022
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, a former Kentucky star and the No. 2 overall NBA Draft pick in 2012, is also rooting for the Peacocks despite his alma mater's loss.
As a second-round NBA Draft pick turned NBA champion, Milwaukee Bucks guard Pat Connaughton is living his own underdog story. The Notre Dame alum is happy to see another in Saint Peter's.
That game was awesome… March is Madness 👏🏼— Pat Connaughton (@pconnaughton) March 26, 2022
This tournament didn't exactly start to former Indiana star Cody Zeller's liking, as the Hoosiers got steamrolled 82-53 in the first round by Saint Mary's. Now, Saint Peter's improbable run gives him another team to support the rest of the way.
Hoosiers 🤝 Peacocks— Cody Zeller (@CodyZeller) March 26, 2022
Former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine is happy to see a Big 10 foe in Purdue go down.
Saint peters!!— Denzel Valentine (@denzelvalentine) March 26, 2022
Saint Peter's guard Doug Edert played excellent defense and scored the game's final two points, a pair of free throws, to give the Peacocks a 3-point lead it would not relinquish. Former Ohio State star Evan Turner was more than pleased with the junior's performance.
Is Doug Edert on any draft boards?— Evan Turner (@thekidet) March 26, 2022
The NFL locked into Saint Peter's upset as well, and its two New Jersey-based teams gave a special shout out to the New Jersey-based Peacocks.