By Maddy Lockwood, Assistant Features Editor
This past Saturday everyone’s favorite basketball team, the Golden Griffins, took on St. Bonaventure at the Koessler Athletic Center…and won. Honestly, I was a little surprised both by the crowd turnout and the spirit of the team. St. Bonaventure’s reputation looms quite large and frankly, Canisius athletics have struggled in the past few years. But the Griffs came out ready and so did the fans!
I very frequently find myself at Canisius athletic events, but the same can’t be said for other members of the student body. Usually, hockey and basketball get the most fans to show up to their games, but even an average game usually tops out at around 40 people, at least in my experience. This past Saturday was not like games I have seen in the past, though.
Frankly, at times it seems as if Canisius students just don’t have school spirit anymore. But unlike most games, the student section filled the general admission section directly to the left of the Bonaventure bench, something I have never seen in my two years at Canisius. The fans came ready to be rowdy — every three-pointer that was made had the fans on their feet and every missed shot by the Bonas got a little bit of sarcastic applause.
That’s not to say that the Bonaventure cult didn’t make their own appearance. St. Bonaventure fans definitely outnumbered us at our own court, which was a little intimidating, especially when they had enough people to get a “Let’s go Bonas” chant going loudly (multiple times I may add).
The amount of people and how loud they were at our court really just added fuel to the fire of hatred that our student section usually reserves for Niagara. Every shot made after that point had Canisius students on their feet and every time that silly little Bonaventure coach stepped on the court (which should have resulted in multiple technicals) during play had our student section yelling very loud expletives, to say the least.
There were large appearances from the men’s lacrosse team, baseball, softball and many others with fewer player appearances to support the men’s basketball team as well as a large showing from C-Block. Talk about Griffs supporting Griffs!
The score stayed close the entire time. Frequently, the lead switched hands, each team having their own little runaways with the lead putting thoughts of doubt and frustration into their respective team’s fans. Frustration with the Griffs had no one more in a chokehold than our very own Editor-In-Chief, Ms. Julia Barth, who I believe should be allowed down on the bench to give her advice to the team.
At the end of regulation time, it was a tie game and the game continued into a five-minute overtime (OT). These last two minutes and all of OT left the student section on their feet and the Griffs ended up pulling the win out with the score of 84-80 at the end. An informal student section consensus gave us the message that if we win we would end up on the court with the team to celebrate — and we did. The teams shook hands and they booked it over to the fans who forced their way down onto the court.
During the game, in between moments of screaming and the actual rollercoaster of emotions, I sat there and just appreciated the energy in the room — Canisius students finally made their presence known.