Andrew Holman | The Duquesne Duke
What if I told you that a battle for bragging rights and basketball supremacy was taking place right here on campus? A chance to bask in the glory of Duquesne’s own March Madness tournament. A chance at one’s own “One Shining Moment.”
The Final Four of the annual Power Madness tournament, which began in 2009, took place on Tuesday night. Four teams played for a shot at a highly coveted spot in the championship game.
Nobody could sum up the electricity in the air better than sophomore Caleb Smith, “It’s fun. It’s exciting. I just love being able to play ball still and chill with my friends.”
If that didn’t make you jump out of your seat then clearly you just don’t understand the magnitude of these games. Out of the 62 total intramural teams who registered for the Power Madness tournament, these are the best four. The four teams who have endured the long and grueling “Road to the Final Four,” a daunting phrase that Greg Gumbel repeats all month long.
The long journey began for these teams at the start of the regular season. Duquesne intramurals offers a freshman, co-ed, women’s, men’s, Greek and a competitive league. All of these teams are eligible to compete in Power Madness when March rolls around. Whose blood, sweat and tears would pay off? Well that’s what was determined in the Power Center on Tuesday night.
The Final Four included Team Uncle Drew, The Friends, The Pipe Squad, and Shawn Kemp’s Kids. The games were filled with scrappy, ball-hawking defense and 3-balls that could light up New York City, with a few bricks and airballs thrown in there as well.
At the end of the night, only two teams would remain. The first matchup was between -Team Uncle Drew and Shawn Kemp’s Kids, with Shawn Kemp’s Kids prevailing 81-58 behind a 25-point performance from Dave Sexauer. Team Uncle Drew must not have downed enough Pepsi Max before the game as they couldn’t overcome the explosive offense of Shawn Kemp’s Kids.
Shawn Kemp’s Kids are hungry for redemption and they believe they have a good shot of obtaining it.
“We’re very excited for the championship game because we lost in the semis of the men’s league, so it’s a great chance for us to come back and win it all in this tournament,” sophomore Patrick Johnson said.
The second matchup featured The Pipe Squad and The Friends, with The Friends pulling out a 55-45 win. AJ Greco led The Friends with 16 points and five rebounds. Unfortunately for The Pipe Squad, the scoreboard wasn’t as friendly to them and they have been eliminated from the Power Madness tournament. Hopefully their friendship will get them through this tough moment.
All jokes aside, the Power Madness tournament is a great asset to Duquesne intramurals. It gives students a chance to play some competitive basketball and is also just a great way to have fun.
“For a lot of kids here this tournament is the one social event they love to get involved with outside of school. Kids spend time at lunch and throughout the day here playing basketball. I’ve seen a lot of kids form friendships,” graduate assistant of intramurals Peter O’Brien said. “It’s a good way to unite many different students. It’s really great for the University.”
Will it be Shawn Kemp’s Kids or The Friends whose name will go down in the history books? Who will get the opportunity to tell their grandkids that they once were the champions of Power Madness?
Find out tonight at 9 p.m. when these two teams square off in the Power Center for the Power Madness title, a championship t-shirt and a spot on the banners that hang around the track above the court. These are bragging rights that don’t expire.