Mount St. Mary’s beat New Orleans, 67-66, in a First Four match-up in Dayton on Tuesday, as guard Junior Robinson scored a game-high 23 points.
“He’s tremendous,” Mount St Mary’s head coach Jamion Christian said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “He’s got such elite speed, and his ability to shoot the ball makes it really difficult for opposing teams to guard him. He can really get up underneath you and just really make you look ugly. He’s got such good surrounding cast around him that you just got to guard him one-on-one, and he’s nearly impossible to guard one-on-one.”
One member of Robinson’s surrounding cast is freshman Miles Wilson, who had 17 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Both Robinson and Wilson played 40 minutes.
“He’s phenomenal,” Christian said, referring to Wilson. “Sometimes you get one in recruiting, and he’s the guy that we got in recruiting. We knew how special he was from the first day that he committed to us. He’s a guy that really works tirelessly. He also was matched up on their leading scorer Erik Thomas, who he held to 12 points. He usually averages 19. So he’s a guy that did it on both ends of the floor tonight as well, not only scoring and assisting and making plays for us, but he really did the job on the defensive end of the floor. He’s done that time and time again. Whatever our team needs to help us win, he’s not afraid of the moment. He does a great job.”
Mount St. Mary’s (20-15), which is in Maryland, will face defending national champion Villanova (31-3) in the Round of 64. Tip-off is Thursday at 7:10 p.m. ET.
“I know a lot of those guys in that Villanova program,” Christian said. “The guys are from D.C. and Baltimore. I know those guys very well. I’ve known Josh Hart since he was 15 years old. I was like the rest of the country last year: I was rooting for them when they were fighting for that national championship and ended up getting it. I think the biggest thing with them is how hard they play. They play really hard, and you got to play every possession like it’s your last on both ends of the floor. If you don’t, they’re going to make some great plays. So we’ve got a challenge ahead of us. Every team does in this tournament, though. There’s a lot of good teams, a lot of teams that can win it, so we’ve just got to play really hard and make some outside shots. Once that ball goes up, that seeding stuff goes out the window and it’s just about the team that can play the best at that time.”