After a couple of early games, March Madness has begun.

The St. Mary’s Gaels men’s basketball team is in Connecticut for their big dance date with reigning champions and 6-seed, Villanova.

The game tips off on Thursday at 4:20 p.m. PT.

St. Mary’s owns a 2-1 lead in the all-time series, but it’s been nearly a decade since these two teams last saw action together.

The Gaels beat the Wildcats in round two back in 2010 and this year’s squad knows the matchup will probably look a little bit different.

“It’s really cool, there’s a lot of hype around it but we just have to make sure we lock in on the task at hand and not focus on all the hype, just go out there and play basketball like we know how to do,” Jordan Ford, junior guard,  said.

“You know, we know that they’re defending national champs. But we just got to come out here and play, just play like how we have been lately. I just think our hard work will soon pay off for this moment,” Malik Fitts, sophomore forward,  said.