March 28, 2011

Broncos Practice at Madison Square Garden to Prepare for CIT Final at Iona Wednesday


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The Santa Clara men's basketball team is practicing in Madison Square Garden Monday as it continues to prepare for the Post-Season Tournament Championship Final at Iona on Wed., March 30 at 5 pm Pacific.

The CIT Champoinship will be on Fox College Sports on cable outlets and on DirecTV 617.

The team, which didn't go back to Santa Clara after its 72-55 win at SMU in Dallas on Friday night, boarded the bus at 5:45 am Central on Sunday morning and flew to New York City.  

On the flight, as the plane approached the New York airport, Kyle Perricone asked Nate Mensah if some buildings were New York City and Nate remarked back: "No, I'm pretty sure you will know when we fly over New York City."  The biggest city Perricone has been to is San Francisco.  

Very few of the players have been to New York City and they are getting a chance to soak in the culture as well as practice and prepare for the game on Wednesday.  Those who have been include Phillip Bach, Julian Clarke, Nate Mensah, Beau Gamble and Troy Payne. Coach Keating grew up in the area so it's "coming home" for him.

Sunday night the team took in the sights in Times Square and ate at John's Pizza.

On Monday, after an 8:30 am wake-up call and a 9 am breakfast, Santa Clara travelled into the city (staying in New Rochelle, N.Y.) to practice at Madison Square Garden.  There are few words to describe their reactions when they stepped on the floor at the Garden.

Yannick Atanga and Marc Trasolini had a spirited discussion on who would dunk on who in practice and Director of Basketball Operations Jesse Pruitt said about mid-way through practice "Kevin Foster is feeling it in the Garden. He hasn't hit the rim yet (meaning all his shots are going in)."

At the end of practice the team ran through a number of drills where they had to shoot buzzer beaters with 3.1 left on the clock.  Really, if you love Bronco basketball, you needed to be there for it.  Perricone won.  

Monday afternoon the team will go on a sight-seeing and eat dinner in Little Italy.  


Check back later for photos!