Then about three weeks ago, we adopted a new dog. Walter is a pug that was a rescue dog from a puppy mill. We saw him at a Halloween dog parade and noticed he was up for adoption. He might be the calmest dog I have ever met and quite friendly. Matthew and my younger son, Jonathan, were smitten.
So about ten days ago, shortly before I was going to make reservations to stay at a hotel, I asked Matthew "Are you still going with me to Rhode Island for the basketball trip?" Matthew's response was "No, I want to stay home and be with Walter."
His response was a soft, yet very short and to the point. "Yes." I realized right there that my six year old son definitely had a lot of my wife in him. He's very sweet, but very honest and direct. I couldn't blame him. Our dog is pretty cute.
So I alone went out this morning on my trip to the Ticket City Legends Classic Subregional at the Ryan Center on the campus of the University of Rhode Island. The trip was actually a quick one, about three hours. Apparently too many people were at the mall early today to be out on I-95.
As I got to the Ryan Center, it's located in the back of URI. You have to drive down Plains Road, which is aptly named, and loop around to the back of the campus. It's a very nice facility that seats about 7,700. Unfortunately, Cleveland State and Boston University are not much of a draw. From my vantage point, there are maybe about one hundred spectators in the building at the tipoff of their game..
these so-called tournaments are not real tournaments. The top four Power Six conference teams that were chosen are guaranteed to play in Madison Square Garden or the Meadowlands. They play a "regional" on their home court, which guarantees them two home games against mid major foes. Then they play the last two rounds of "the tournament" at either MSG (2K Sports Classic) or in this case,. the Meadowlands.
If this had been a real tournament, one of the two teams I saw in the first game, Cleveland State, would have been at the Meadowlands. Cleveland State upset Vanderbilt 71-58 on the Commodores home court in the "regional". Instead of the opportunity to play in New Jersey, the Vikings got to play in Rhode Island. All things considered, I'd rather be near Newport myself.
Cleveland State's opponent, Boston University, made the NCAA tournament last season. Their best player from last season, John Holland, also graduated. But unlike the Vikings, the Terriers have struggled, losing their first three games of the season. They were hoping to leave Rhode Island with at least one win and they would have three chances this weekend.
Cleveland State scored the first two baskets of the second half and went up 25-24. But just as it appeared the Vikings were going to gain control of the game, the Terriers responded. For most of the second half, BU controlled the action. The Terriers were up by as much as eleven, 45-34 with nine and half minutes left.
Partin continued terrorizing Cleveland State, as he would actually score more points in the second half than he did in the first. Hardin had help in the second half as Patrick Hazel and D.J. Irving contributed from the field. BU was playing really hard and maintained a nine point lead, 52-43 with six and a half minutes left.
And sure enough, Cleveland State's Brown caught fire and scored ten straight points for the Vikings, including a three pointer to cut the lead to one, 54-53. After BU went up by four again, again Cleveland State got a three pointer, this time by Harmon, to cut the lead to one, 57-56. Again, the Terriers went up by four 62-58, but again, Harmon buried another three, and again the lead was one, 62-61 with 5.6 seconds left.
In large part due to a mismanaged clock, one team, Cleveland State, remained undefeated, while another team, Boston University, remained winless. The outcome truly seemed unfair to the Terriers. This was proof positive that this game will hurt you.