Great spirit on Catawba College campus as women’s basketball team battles in NCAA D2 Final Four
SALISBURY, N.C. (WBTV) - There’s more of that March Madness excitement on the campus of Catawba College in Salisbury today. The women’s basketball team made it to the NCAA Division 2 Final Four, and tonight they play for a spot in the final and a possible national championship.
Tonight’s game is in Missouri, but the team’s home gym will likely be filled for a big watch party.
On Monday there was also a watch party, and while the team was in Missouri winning and advancing to the Final Four, the fans at home were celebrating.
“And it was rocking,” said Daniel Waln, Associate Head Men’s Basketball Coach.
And today on campus there’s a strong sense of pride.
“Seeing them do what they do on TV and having these watch parties is awesome to see how they compete we have a school atmosphere where we’re all rooting for them,” said Adrian Rudisell, a Catawba College student-athlete and Rowan County native. “I love it.”
At the bookstore, it means a run on Catawba gear.
“It’s amazing,” said Stephanie Taylor. “The energy has been so high and everybody is so proud of the girls and all that they’ve done and how well they’re doing in the tournament.”
Success in sports isn’t new for Catawba. There are cases full of trophies and nets, even state championships, but the final four in the NCAA tournament? That’s new ground.
“One game away from the national championship,” said Mike Smith, Sr. Director of Athletics Development, Catawba College. “It’s actually the farthest any South Atlantic Conference women’s basketball team has been, I just learned that earlier today, so that’s an amazing fact and something to be proud of for our women.”
“We went 23-8, we won our division and then we won the conference tournament,” Waln added.
The men’s team had a big year too, but for now, like everyone else, they’ll focus on this amazing run by the women’s team, and what it can mean for the school.
“They classify North Carolina as a hoop state, right, because you’ve got Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest, NC State and hopefully now Catawba,” Waln noted.
The watch party begins at 5:30 p.m., the game tips off at 7:00 p.m.
Copyright 2023 WBTV. All rights reserved.