Snowstorm doesn't deter sizable Georgetown contingent against Villanova
Sunday, February 7, 2010
For the second weekend in a row, fans of the Georgetown men's basketball team encountered atypical circumstances at Verizon Center. Last Saturday, President Obama created a stir when he and Vice President Biden attended the Hoyas' game against Duke. Today, all the chatter was about the elements.
Despite two feet of snow in the Washington area, an announced crowd of 10,387 found a way to get to the arena and was treated to a spirited performance by the home team in a 103-90 victory over Big East rival Villanova.
"It was unbelievable," Georgetown Coach John Thompson III said of the fan support for the sold-out game. "For everyone to come out, it's truly appreciated. We feed off of our crowd. For everyone to make the effort to get down here, on behalf of our team, our institution, we want to thank them."
Thompson said Georgetown had considered rescheduling the game because of concern for fan safety amid the elements but that there was no suitable date to do so.
Although empty seats were abundant at tip-off, the stands wound up being more than half filled roughly 10 minutes into the game. A good number of those dedicated Georgetown followers were students.
Geoffrey Bible, 20, was among them, and his trip included trudging through unplowed streets near campus and then hoofing it across Key Bridge to the Rosslyn Metro. When he arrived at the arena, Bible planted himself in his familiar spot in the student section mere steps from the baseline.
"I've been in the front row for every game this season," Bible said, "and I didn't want to break that up."
Bob Coleman, a Georgetown University law student, made the short trip on foot to Verizon Center from his home in Chinatown, but first he had to shovel snow around his walkway for close to 30 minutes.
"I knew it was going to be an important game because of the loss to South Florida," he said, referring to the Hoyas' 72-64 defeat on Wednesday.
Other Georgetown students walked all the way from campus, taking an hour to cover the three-mile trek through the snow.
Georgetown's players showed their appreciation by mingling with their classmates before the game, and several players even ventured deep into the stands, much to the delight of the student section.
"But once the game starts, you have to play," said Hoyas center Greg Monroe, who had 19 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. "Of course we loved having the president here. We'd rather not have a snowstorm."