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Bulls Men's & Women's hoops head to NCAA Tourney

Posted at 12:34 PM, Mar 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-14 21:26:38-04

The UB Bulls are headed to the Big Dance -- and it's a double dose of celebration for University at Buffalo.

The UB Bulls Men's Basketball Team beat Akron in a championship winning buzzer beater. They now head to Providence, RI to play Miami in the first round. Tip-off is at 6:50 p.m. on Thursday.

The Women's Basketball Team will play Ohio State in Columbus on Friday at 2:30PM in the first-round matchup of the NCAA tournament.

"It's just so exciting," said Stephanie Reid, a guard for the Bulls. "It's unbelievable, it's just such a great feeling to be MAC champions finally."

This is the first time in history that the UB Bull's Women's Basketball Team won the MAC Championship to head to the Big Dance.

The dramatic three-pointer by sophomore Stephanie Reid brought UB ahead of Central Michigan in overtime, securing the 73-71 win.

"It took my breath away," said Joanna Smith, a junior Bulls player. "I just knew it was going to go in."

The team went in as the underdog. "No one thought we could do it," said Smith. "That's what makes it so much sweeter."

"I'm just so proud of this young group, we just kept getting better every single game," said Bulls Coach Felisha Legette-Jack."It culminated with a MAC championship for the first time, my heart overflows."

The men's team started with a challenging year. Former Head Coach Bobby Hurley, who took the team to its first NCAA Tournament game ever last year, unexpectedly left for Arizona. One player followed him.

Star player Justin Moss was kicked off the team after he and two teammates were accused of taking $650 from two other students. Moss had been named MAC Player of the Year.

Oats had worked on the team under Hurley for two years, and was promoted to Head Coach. Before University at Buffalo, he had worked as the Head Coach for a high school football team.

Three years into his college career, and his first year as Head Coach, Oats is taking his team to the NCAA Tournament. This was the team's second MAC Championship ever.

"Hopefully we can go and make some noise," said Blake Hamilton, who scored a three-pointer with two seconds left on the clock to beat Akron. "Both teams, let's go make some noise and be Cinderella twins!"

The Men's Basketball Team found out it has been lined-up against Miami during a party at Santora's.

Buffalo is 20-14 overall. They went 10-8 in the MAC. Miami is 25-7 overall. They went 13-5 in the Atlantic Coast Conference and lost to Virginia in the ACC semifinals.

The women's team will head to Columbus to face The Ohio State, Friday afternoon.  Tip-off is set for 2:30pm.

Check out interviews with Bulls head coach Felisha Legette-Jack and with Bulls Guard, Cassie Oursler.

Go Bulls!