I have never written back to back blogs about a player, especially one in college. But when you play in one of the best college games we will see this year. Well your just a little different than most. Ariana Dalina once again proved she is different than most. That because she and her Bates College teammates dreamed up a miracle tonight. Because of that they are moving on in the NCAA Tournament. They are joining that small population of players still lacing them up. That group of seniors still playing college basketball. That group who are still giving fans something to cheer about. Tonight Bates College gave the state of Maine and the Bates community something to remember. They won one of the most exciting games in their schools history on the biggest of stages, THE NCAA TOURNAMENT…. and ARIANA DALIA WAS NOT SPECIAL..SHE WAS DIFFERENT IN EVERY WAY.
I know all about St. Francis College in Brooklyn, it’s a nightmare to play at. The fans on are top of you. The fans are above you. It’s the only college gym, you can smell the perfume and the body odor of those sitting next to you. You can hear every gunt and word from the crowd and the players. That’s because everyone is that close to you. There is no place to hide or to catch your breath. I felt that for 12 years as an assistant coach who had to play in that gym every year. Tonight there was not a seat available in that sweat box for the Roger Williams and Bates College NCAA 1ST ROUND GAME. That’s because business was taking place tonight. NCAA business, dream business. Tonight DREAMS were being were being extended or extinguished. Roger Williams and Bates College simply didn’t understand that so they played a 1st Round NCAA game for the ages. A game that nobody wanted to end. A game that saw a standing room crowd stand and cheer for both teams as the final whistle blew. Bates College was the dream maker, the team that would march on. The team that just won’t stop making memories and dreams come true. Ariana Dalia you ask? Well she just decided if I am going to come home and play in front of my mom, friends and coaches, then I guess I should give them something they will never forget.. and tonight with help from her teammates, she made this the best homecoming in Bates NCAA history!
They say you have to do the impossible to make you dreams come true. Well having Mia Roy around certainly doesn’t hurt. They teach you when your young to play to the buzzer, and that’s exactly what Bates College did tonight. I guess all that stuff about the teamwork makes the dream work is actually true. That because Bates College had to come back tonight from the depths of hell to beat Roger Williams. They had to dig down deep and believe in each other. They also had to have a senior who has won chips and done big things her entire career when she was down and out... once again RISE LIKE THE PHOENIX and lead the way. Ariana Dalia refused to let Roger Williams run away and hide as hard as they may have tired tonight. She simply refuse to lose, she keep pulling them back in all night over and over. She keep her team close all night. She gave her teammates a chance to live. She made to many big plays to mention tonight to keep Bates College dreams alive. So when her team when down by 10 points you thought they were living a pipe dream, not a big dream. But they fought back and when MIA ROY MADE THE BIGGEST SHOT IN BATES HISTORY… IT WAS CLEAR… TEAMWORK DOES MAKES THE DREAM WORK! With the clock winding down and dreams fading, she made the three point shot heard around Maine to send the game into overtime.
Then in overtime a once young teenager who thought she didn’t want to play basketball again… that little girl who only wanted a chance to show she was different. Ariana then did exactly that tonight, showed she was different on the biggest stage in the biggest spotlight of all. Ariana Dalina, made the game tying free throw and then the game winning bucket. I mean when you going to to make a movie, can it really be any other way when it comes to the Ariana Dalia story…. A story that just keeps getting betting by the moment… I think it time for a DONUT… LET’S CALL IT THE MIRACLE DONUT WITH A TWIST… that twist… a DREAM WHO NEEDS THE CREAM!!!