The Times West Virginian

Bob Herzel

February 14, 2010

HERTZEL COLUMN - WVU women don’t let down large crowd

MORGANTOWN — The first thought as you approached the Coliseum on Sunday afternoon was to check your calendar and your watch, for surely something was wrong.

Oddly, it said it was Valentine’s Day, sure enough, and the time was shortly after noon.

You could have sworn that they had told you the West Virginia women’s basketball team, not the men's team, was playing Georgetown, yet there it was, a parking lot full of automobiles. When the women play, you can normally pull up right about game time, and get a spot right out front.

This time you were so far back you expected Bob Uecker to pull up and park alongside you, right there in the back row.

Uecker wasn’t there, but there was enough other people to give you the idea that maybe women’s basketball is on the verge of some kind of breakthrough at West Virginia.

Among the 6,754 fans who filled the lower section of the Coliseum and overflowed into the upper level, making it the fourth-largest crowd ever to see a women’s game there, was one Da’Sean Butler, men’s basketball star.

If the women’s game can interest one of the players who spend their time flying high into the rafters while playing the game, surely it must be worthy of the common folk's attendance, and that’s how it was on this day as Butler stuck around to the end, signing autographs and watching the West Virginia ladies win for the 17th consecutive time at home.

Not to make comparisons, for they are unfair, but the WVU women are ranked No. 8/9 in the nation, and after beating the No. 13/16 Hoyas, 55-46, they might even move up while Butler’s Mountaineers were sure to slide down the national scale after two losses this week.

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Bob Herzel
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