Basketball world will soon center on Stevens Point
There's a basketball spotlight shining on Stevens Point.
"The city embraces it," says Tom Coleman, sports sales manager at Stevens Point Area Convention and Visitor Bureau.
University leaders learned Monday that UW-Stevens Point will host the first two rounds of the Division III NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. This comes a day after the Pointers sealed a conference title and a trip to the big dance. But, the men's tournament is just the start. In about two weeks, the university will host the Women's Final Four.
Coleman says,"Not only what we're going to be doing as a community in hosting championships, but then to have our teams competing on such a high level, I think that just adds to it."
With the final four teams still to be determined, university leaders say hundreds of advance tickets have already been sold. Something athletic director Daron Montgomery attributes to community support.
"Clearly there's going to be a boost with hotels, restaurants and on the hospitality industry here in Stevens Point," says Montgomery.
UWSP is hosting the women's final four for the first time. Montgomery says some key factors in landing the final four were UWSP facilities, its fan base and its rich winning history.
"It's about this community and it's fans. They're so passionate about their basketball programs," Montgomery said. "I think it just says a lot about what college athletics means to the city of Stevens Point and the community."