Big Dance has former KF, NR stars

Published 7:23 pm Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Old Dominion, Cincinnati and Marquette learned their NCAA Tournament opponents and sites Sunday evening as the 68-team field was announced.

Old Dominion sophomore forward Nick Wright is a Nansemond River alum.

ODU (27-6), the Colonial Athletic Association champion for the second straight year, is a No. 9 seed and drew the national runner-up from last season, Horizon League champion Butler (23-9). The Bulldogs won five straight games in the 2010 tourney before falling 61-59 to Duke in the title game.
ODU and Butler will open Thursday’s slate of four games at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., tipping at 12:40 p.m.
“There’s no easy game in the tournament, we have to earn our spurs,” said Old Dominion head coach Blaine Taylor.
“I like the location and like the chance to have our crowd there,” Taylor said.
Sophomore Nick Wright (Nansemond River) is a forward for the Monarchs, having played in all 33 games and averaging 1.5 points per game.
The Monarchs have won nine straight games and 13 of their last 14 games.
Butler beat ODU 57-46 in the first round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament.
The winner between the Monarchs and Bulldogs is likely to face top-seeded Pittsburgh, the regular-season champion of the Big East, on Saturday.


Cincinnati (25-8) earned a No. 6 seed and will meet No. 11 Missouri (23-10) Thursday at 9:50 p.m. in Washington, D.C.
Cincinnati and Marquette are two of 11 Big East schools to make the NCAA field, which is a record for one conference in an NCAA Tournament.
The Bearcats opened the season 15-0 and went 12-8 against Big East competition.
Sophomore guard JaQuon Parker (King’s Fork) has played in 22 games for the Bearcats.

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Marquette (20-14) is a No. 11 seed and matches up against No. 6 Xavier (24-7) in the second round Friday evening in Cleveland.

True freshman Davante Gardner (King’s Fork) is a 6-foot-8 forward for the


Golden Eagles. Gardner’s averaging 4.3 points and 2.0 rebounds a game.
St. Augustine’s junior Christopher Copeland (Lakeland) finished sixth in the high jump, with a best mark of 6-feet-11.5, in the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field National Championships Saturday in Albuquerque, N.M.
The finish in the top eight earned Copeland NCAA All-American honors.

Boston College junior Brittany Wilkins (Nansemond-Suffolk) hit three home runs in four games as BC’s softball squad finished a nine-day road trip to Reno, Nev. over the weekend. The three homers give Wilkins nine on the season, which leads the ACC.
Wilkins a catcher/third baseman is hitting .450 for the season with nine doubles, 20 RBI and a 1.050 slugging percentage.


BC (4-15) lost all four games to finish the trip. The Lady Eagles start conference play at Virginia Friday-Sunday.

William and Mary junior Matt Davenport (Nansemond-Suffolk) got the win on the mound in a 4-3 Tribe win at Old Dominion Friday.
Davenport, a 6-foot-8 right-handed pitcher, started and went seven innings, allowing three runs and four hits. Davenport is 1-2 with a 3.29 ERA and has 21 strikeouts in 27.1 innings.
The Tribe went on to win two of the three CAA games at ODU. W&M (6-12, 2-4) hosts Richmond Tuesday and has a three-game series against visiting George Mason Friday-Sunday.