Bubble Watch: Dayton Basketball Takes Huge Step, Beats No. 17 St. Louis

Rob Leifheit-USA TODAY Sports

The Dayton Flyers came into tonight’s game against the St. Louis Billikens with their season on the line. It was simply a must-win game for the Flyers, who were trying to validate their seven wins in eight games and lock up a NCAA tournament bid. Consider it mission accomplished.

The Flyers walked out of St. Louis with a 72-67 win over the 17th ranked St. Louis Billikens, and more than likely locked up head coach Archie Miller’s first NCAA Tournament bid as coach of the Flyers. The win also gave the Flyers their eighth win in nine games, and gives them a 21-9 record for the season. Dayton ends the season at home against Richmond on Saturday.

It wasn’t easy for the Flyers, as they were down most of the game. However, they fought back to a tie with six minutes left and never looked back. The win was the Flyers’ second win of the season over a Top 25 opponent, with their first coming all the way back on Nov. 25 against then No. 11 Gonzaga, 84-79.

The Flyers Bracketology has been mixed, with bracketologists projecting Dayton anywhere from an 8th seed to completely out of the NCAA tournament. But with two Top 25 wins under their belt, a winning conference record, and a long run of wins at the end of the season, the Flyers have punched their ticket.

The inclusion of the Flyers in the NCAA tournament, will give the Atlantic 10 five teams into the NCAA tournament, and solidifies the A10 as one of the better conferences in the country.

Jason Love is a writer for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @JloveWshs

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