March 5, 2013
Cullowhee, N.C. - Western Carolina men's and women's basketball teams open play this week in the annual Southern Conference Basketball Championships between the Kimmel Arena on the campus of UNC Asheville and U.S. Cellular Arena in downtown Asheville.
WCU's quest for the crowns begin at 11:30 am on Friday, March 8 as the ninth-seeded Catamount women face No. 8 seed Georgia Southern at Kimmel Arena with the sixth-seeded Catamount men facing No. 11 seed The Citadel beginning at approximately 8:30 pm on Friday evening.
Each game WCU plays will be broadcast on the Catamount Sports Network with live streaming audio online at www.CatamountSports.com. Fans can also catch the action of both men's and women's over the air on WWCU-FM, Power 90dot5 in Cullowhee. Additionally, each men's game will be broadcast on 540 AM WRGC in Sylva; 920 AM WPTL in Canton; and in Asheville on ESPN Radio 1310 & 970 AM.
Women's broadcasts will have a 15-minute pregame show while the men's broadcasts have a 30-minute pregame.
Festivities for the 2013 SoCon Basketball Championship get underway on Thursday as both the men and women will have their practice/shoot around times at their respective sites of competition. The men's squad practices in the morning while the women will hit the court early Thursday afternoon.
Then, focus shifts to "Catamount Central," presented by Wells Fargo at the Lexington Avenue Brewery (LAB, 39 N. Lexington Ave., lexavebrew.com) for a special Thursday night pep rally social. Both the men's and women's basketball teams will be in attendance at the event that gets underway at 7:00 pm and is open to the public. Catamount fans are encouraged to show their "Purple Pride" at the event in downtown Asheville by sporting purple attire.
Parking at the Lexington Avenue Brewery is available in a private lot located directly across the street at the intersection of Walnut and N. Lexington. The Rankin Ave. garage is directly behind the building. Parking in the city garages is free for the first hour.
On Friday morning, competition gets underway as the Catamount women square-off against Georgia Southern at 11:30 am at Kimmel Arena. It is the third-straight year that WCU and the Eagles have met in the opening round of the tournament with WCU claiming the first two meetings to advance. Friday morning's game is also part of the Education Day program.
With the memory of last year's epic run to the SoCon Championship game still lingering around the U.S. Cellular Center, Western Carolina's men's team begins its quest for the title in similar fashion as it did one year removed as it faces 11th-seeded The Citadel Bulldogs in the final game of the opening day on Friday. The Catamounts and Cadets meet for the fourth-time in the first round of the tournament with WCU having won 2-of-3.
Fans can purchase advanced tickets through the WCU Athletic Ticket Office by calling 800-34-GOWCU or stopping by the first floor of the Ramsey Center. Single-session tickets for both the men's and women's tournament are just $18.