Capital Region Hoop Fans Had Front Row To Three Of The Final Four
The Capital Region takes advantage of great basketball played in the region. This year was no different with the first and second rounds of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at the MVP Arena, played in front of sell-out crowds, including celebrities and sports icons.
As the madness has whittled down to four teams, local hoop fans may have had a better look at these teams than any city in the country. 3 of the Final Four teams played in the Capital Region during the 2022-23 seasons.
Yes, the first two are easy. UConn and Miami brought down the house at the MVP Arena on St. Patrick's Day and the Sunday following winning their brackets to go to the Sweet 16. Oscar nominated actor Bill Murray was perched both days behind the UConn bench, cheering on his assistant coach son. But do you know the other Final Four team that played in the Capital Region this season?
On the Saturday after Thanksgiving, UAlbany men's basketball coach Dwayne Killings had scheduled a game with Florida Atlantic. Before the game, Killings told The Drive with Charlie & Dan that the Owls "were really athletic and very tough to defend." The Great Danes hung with the future Final Four team throughout most of the second half, trailing by 1 with only 7:54 remaining in the game. Florida Atlantic pulled away from Albany for a 73-56 victory. Not many got a great look at the FAU Owls that day.
Just over a thousand fans made it over to Hudson Valley Community College for that Saturday afternoon matinee featuring the Final Four team. The Great Danes played their home games at HVCC this past season while the SEFCU Arena is being renovated. You never really know who you may be watching, while you are attending a Siena or UAlbany home game. It could be the next team ready to be crowned National Champion. One thing is for sure, Capital Region hoop fans got a close look at this year's final weekend teams.