Seton Hall (72) Vs. St. Johns (85) 02/21/2015

#13 of 351

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This was the first basketball game where I had to go through a metal detector. The lines were very long entering the arena. God bless you Louie but this arena is a terrible place to watch a game. For those in the upper sections, the upper half of the center court scoreboard is hidden. The halls in the outside of the arena are not too wide. The few concession stands  had lines at least 100 folks long at half time. Others just trying to walk by created a traffic jam. In the  upper level rows, there was not enough room for people to walk by especially if you were of a wide girth. The whole place makes the Hartford XL Center look good.

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I will say that the lower level seats were right on top of the court lending a positive experience for those fans and players. St. Johns has a 31-4 record playing here so it must be a great place to play for the team. This was a key game for both teams who are on the bubble.

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There were boos every time Seton Hall freshman Isiah Washington touched the ball. Not only did he choose Seton Hall over St. Johns, he tweeted that no one in the city would want to go to St. Johns. He did not have a good game.

Nice to see Chris Mullen along with other Seton Hall hall of famers honored at half time.

All the fans were supposed to get a Malik Sealy bobblehead doll. Unfortunately, the doll was a casualty of the west coast shipping strike. The dolls are still on some boat in the harbor. Sealy was an ex St. Johns star who died tragically at the age of 30 in a car accident.

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St Johns pulled away in the end with some excellent 3 point shooting. I was eager to get out of there to beat the snowstorm. I give the fans credit for packing the place although there were many Seton Hall fans as well.

Review from Stadium Journey : http://www.stadiumjourney.com/stadiums/carnesecca-arena-s551

 

Marist (67) vs. Iona (87) 02/08/2015

#12 of 351

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All I know about New Rochelle is that TV Dick Van Dyke lived there. The IONA campus is smack in the middle of a residential area. The crowd was mostly older man and families. I am guessing that IONA basketball it the thing to do in New Rochelle.

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IONA had this freshman name Schadrac Casimir. For you CT high school basketball buffs, this is the kid who led Trinity Catholic to the state finals two a years ago and prepped at Kent for a year. He has the face of a cherubic angel standing 5’10″” weighing 155 pounds. He stood in the corner and waited for the ball. When he was passed to, he jacked up a three making 9 of 14 attempts. Up to this game, he was averaging 14.9 ppg.

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This arena has the strangest system for reserved seats. The seats in my section do not have numbers. The sections are along the side walls not from the top down. I never did find my seat but sat down in the general area where I thought it was. The two ushers I asked just pointed me in a general area. very confusing!

I thought I saw the ghost of Jeff Ruland in the mens’ room.

 

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Review from Stadium Journey: http://www.stadiumjourney.com/news/03-28-2014/599/college-basketball-arena-rankings-2014/

Wagner (75) vs. Sacred Heart (86) 02/05/2015

#11 of 351

I was asked by the ticket person “Would you like to upgrade to court side seating for an extra $2”. Oh yeah was my response. Court side seats mean you are basically sitting on the court itself just off beyond the sideline. I will always try to get court side seats which is entirely possible when visiting a smaller arena like the William Pitt Center.

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Another advantage of sitting this close is the appreciation of how athletic some of these kids were. Seeing a flying dunk at close ground level looks impressive to say the least. You also get an appreciation of the intensity of the athletes in action.

I was going to go with my cousin Mike but unfortunately his wife Tammy came down with the flu. He had to stay home and take care of her. A friend Andy and Mike are two that love sports as much as I do. They have both accompanied to some games.

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At the beginning of the game, I hand counted (not including the band and cheerleaders) 78 folks in the stands on this very cold Thursday night. I probably drew from stares from people thinking why would that person pay extra for a game like this. Yes both clubs were having mediocre seasons. But to really experience a game, you need to get as close as possible to hear the players shout instructions, hear the trash talking going on and occasionally hear the referees question calls among themselves.

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I saw that one player Noel Long on the Wagner roster who hailed from Waterford CT. I texted my buddy Rick from Waterford to see if he knew him. Yes he replied that they were friends of the entire family. Small world!

Kudos to the Sacred Heart band! Not only did they play loud but they were the only ones in the stands cheering their team on. I was impressed with their numbers.

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Review from Stadium Journey: http://www.stadiumjourney.com/stadiums/william-pitt-center-s719