Villanova wins NCAA championship with buzzer-beater

Updated

HOUSTON — They call it “Nova.”

They practice the play every day during the “Wildcat Minute.” The purpose is to be prepared, regardless of the time on the clock, the score of the game and how many timeouts they have available. It’s a play that’s been in Jay Wright’s arsenal for years. Before Monday, the most famous shot during Wright’s tenure at Villanova came using “Nova” as point guard Scottie Reynolds took the ball the length of the floor in 5.5 seconds and finished a runner in traffic to beat Pitt in the 2009 Elite Eight.

The 2016 version of “Nova” substitutes Reynolds for Ryan Arcidiacono. Villanova’s trusted senior point guard is given the ball and tasked with taking a shot or finding an open option.

With 4.7 seconds left and Villanova tied with North Carolina at 74 with the national championship on the line, Arcidiacono made the right read, as he found trailing teammate, and inbounder, Kris Jenkins for the game-winning 3-pointer from the right wing as the Wildcats captured their second national championship in program history with a 77-74 win over North Carolina on Monday night.

Read more at NBCSports.com

NCAA Men's Final Four - National Championship - Villanova v North Carolina (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty)
Brice Johnson #11 of the North Carolina Tar Heels and Daniel Ochefu #23 of the Villanova Wildcats battle for the opening tip-off during the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty
Villanova head coach Jay Wright speaks to players in huddle during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Eric Gay/AP)
Villanova head coach Jay Wright speaks to players in huddle during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Eric Gay/AP
North Carolina's Brice Johnson (11) goes up for a basket during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Houston. (Photo by Eric Gay/AP)
North Carolina’s Brice Johnson (11) goes up for a basket during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
Photo by Eric Gay/AP
North Carolina Tar Heels fans cheer in the first half during the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game between the Villanova Wildcats and the North Carolina Tar Heels on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty)
North Carolina Tar Heels fans cheer in the first half during the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game between the Villanova Wildcats and the North Carolina Tar Heels at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty
Head coach Roy Williams of the North Carolina Tar Heels looks on in the first half against the Villanova Wildcats during the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty)
Head coach Roy Williams of the North Carolina Tar Heels looks on in the first half against the Villanova Wildcats during the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty
Villanova's Phil Booth (5) shoots during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, Monday, April 4, 2016, in Houston. (Photo by David J. Phillip/AP)
Villanova’s Phil Booth (5) shoots during the first half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, Monday, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
Photo by David J. Phillip/AP
The Villanova Wildcats bench reacts in the second half against the North Carolina Tar Heels during the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty)
The Villanova Wildcats bench reacts in the second half against the North Carolina Tar Heels during the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. 
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty
Villanova basketball fans view a broadcast of the national championship between Villanova and North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Villanova, Pa. (Photo by Matt Rourke/AP)
Villanova basketball fans view a broadcast of the national championship between Villanova and North Carolina, April 4, 2016, in Villanova, Pa.
Photo by Matt Rourke/AP
North Carolina Tar Heels guard Joel Berry II (2) drives to the basket against Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) during the first half in the championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)
North Carolina Tar Heels guard Joel Berry II (2) drives to the basket against Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) during the first half in the championship game of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Villanova vs North Carolina (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)
North Carolina Tar Heels guard Marcus Paige (5) shoots and scores a three point basket against the Villanova Wildcats in the second half in the championship game to tie the game in the final seconds of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four on April 4, 2016 in Houston Texas.
Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
Kris Jenkins #2 of the Villanova Wildcats shoots the game-winning three pointer to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 in the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty)
Kris Jenkins #2 of the Villanova Wildcats shoots the game-winning three pointer to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 in the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. 
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty
Kris Jenkins #2 of the Villanova Wildcats shoots the game-winning three pointer to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 in the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty)
Kris Jenkins #2 of the Villanova Wildcats shoots the game-winning three pointer to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 in the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty
North Carolina head coach Roy Williams, right and his players on the bench react after the Villanova game winning three pointer at the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against Villanova, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
North Carolina head coach Roy Williams, right and his players on the bench react after the Villanova game winning three pointer at the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against Villanova, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
Photo by David J. Phillip/AP
Villanova players celebrate after the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, Monday, April 4, 2016, in Houston. (Photo by David J. Phillip/AP)
Villanova players celebrate after the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against North Carolina, Monday, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
Photo by David J. Phillip/AP
The Villanova Wildcats celebrate defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty)
The Villanova Wildcats celebrate defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty
NCAA Men's Final Four - National Championship - Villanova v North Carolina (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty)
Ryan Arcidiacono #15 of the Villanova Wildcats celebrates with Phil Booth #5 and Mikal Bridges #25 after defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty
NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Villanova vs North Carolina (Photo by Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)
Villanova Wildcats forward Kris Jenkins (2) reacts after making the game winning three pointer over the North Carolina Tar Heels in the championship game of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Villanova vs North Carolina (Photo by Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)
Villanova Wildcats forward Kris Jenkins (2) and forward Daniel Ochefu (23) celebrate after beating the North Carolina Tar Heels in the championship game of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
North Carolina's Theo Pinson sits in the locker room after the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against Villanova, April 4, 2016, in Houston. (Photo by Eric Gay/AP)
North Carolina’s Theo Pinson sits in the locker room after the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game against Villanova, April 4, 2016, in Houston.
Photo by Eric Gay/AP
Head coach Jay Wright of the Villanova Wildcats celebrates defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty)
Head coach Jay Wright of the Villanova Wildcats celebrates defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty
NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Villanova vs North Carolina (Photo by Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)
Villanova Wildcats forward Daniel Ochefu hoists the national championship trophy with teammates after defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels in the championship game of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
Photo by Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
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Villanova wins NCAA championship with buzzer-beater

Updated