Brooklyn, NY - The holiday classic celebrates ’the most wonderful time of the year.’ To the college fan, it is not the Yule season. It is March. Not termed ’madness’ for nothing. This is the time your team, mired in a sub-.500 season, has new hope and aspirations. Utilize the time worn ’survive and advance’ and who knows?
The Atlantic Ten postseason tournament is once again staged at the Barclays Center. A single elimination event. Also a chance for alumni and friends to reconnect. An opportunity for players to get out and perform in an NBA arena.
The styles of the teams, matchups and the like provide a wealth of story lines. The four-game session that began at noon and wrapped up about eleven hours later provided us with a fair share. To summarize….LaSalle got by UMASS to ‘live another day’. The battle of Rams saw improved Fordham give VCU all it could handle. Back on media day in this very building, did the last sentence seem comprehensible? It is difficult to beat a team three times in a season. St. Bonaventure did just that, eliminating defending champion St. Joseph’s. George Washington eliminated Duquesne, ending coach Jim Ferry’s return to Brooklyn.
The great thing about all this, there is much more coming. Styles, stories and scintillating action. The only certainty, there will be a new champion crowned Sunday.
Yes, ’the most wonderful time of the year.
Arriving at Barclays late afternoon for the evening session, with Brooklyn traffic in full force:
Teams warming up about 45 minutes before the tip:
Mark Schmidt of St. Bonaventure meeting the media after advancing to the quarterfinals:
Phil Martelli's wife, Judy, with their grandson, Philip, very entertained with the postgame press conference and new souvenirs:
The outstanding George Washington dance team gracing the baseline:
George Washington coach Mike Lonergan reacts to a situation:
Exiting Barclays late after some outstanding action: