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Cinderella Madness Simulated College Basketball Tourny: Davidson vs. St. Mary's

RALEIGH, NC - MARCH 23:  Stephen Curry #30 of the Davidson Wildcats celebrates after a basket against the Georgetown Hoyas during the second round of the 2008 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Midwest Regionals on March 23, 2008 at RBC Center in Raleigh, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Jake WestrichSenior Writer IFebruary 28, 2012

Cinderella Madness

WhatIfSports.com and CollegeHoops.net have partnered up to bring you Cinderella Madness 2012.

This college basketball simulation tournament features 16 of the most memorable Cinderella stories from the past eight seasons. We invited teams outside the Big Six conferences seeded seventh or lower that advanced to the Sweet 16 or beyond in their bracket to participate.

Utilizing our award-winning college basketball simulation engine, we "played" each matchup 501 times

View the 16-team Cinderella Madness bracket.

In the annals of hoops, mere mortals have transcended into hardwood heroes with courageous exploits in the most maddening of moments.

Steve Kerr in Game 6 of the '97 Finals. Ali Farokhmanesh's cojones-filled bomb against Kansas in the 2010 NCAA tournament. Ollie's free throws versus the Wildcats in Hoosiers.

Add Thomas Sander's jumper in Cinderella Madness to the list, as the glue man's conquest gave Davidson a 79-77 W over St. Mary's.

The Gaels looked to put the game out of reach early, building a 15-point lead in the first half. But the Wildcats responded with vigor, raining an army of threes before heading into the locker room to cut their deficit to five.

From that juncture, both teams traded punches, with neither band able to pull away from the other. Stephen Curry unleashed his usual carnage, this time to the tune of 25 points and eight rebounds, but St. Mary big man Omar Samhan went toe-to-toe with the sharpshooter, pouring in 18 points of his own to go with 11 boards.

Enter Sander, a senior with solid if not spectacular averages of 7.5 points and 4.8 boards in the 2007-2008 season. With the score tied at 77 after a Ben Allen jumper from the top of the key, Jason Richards found Sander wide open in the corner, undoubtedly a byproduct of the Gaels' attention to Curry.

He nailed the shot, sending Davidson into the Final Four. Not only did Sander clinch the victory, but he posted an overall superb performance of 15 points and five boards. Somewhere, Robert Horry is smiling.

Player of the Game: Stephen Curry (25 PTS, 8 REB, 2 AST , 3 STL)

Winning Percentage of 501 Simulations: '08 Davidson 62.3 percent vs. '10 Saint Mary's 37.7 percent

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