Bad Night for Both UMaine Basketball teams vs. UNH

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Re: Bad Night for Both UMaine Basketball teams vs. UNH

Postby turkeyman » Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:47 am


I've heard high school coaches and players complain about the floor at the Expo. Soft spots. Much like the arena at Springfield College, where USM played for the national gold ball in 2005. You could see the floorboards rise and fall as players ran the floor. Expo may have been fixed for the D-league guys, which would make it better. Lighting seems good, no spectator is far from the action. No chairbacks. But AE ruled out Expo early on, didn't it?

I'm not sure Maine will draw 3,000 for its first-round game. The only fix I have on the interest in UMaine down there that high school kids don't want to play at UM. Portland media consider their audience is for pro sports, with some serious nods to high school at championship season in many sports. Colleges just don't matter much to PPH and MST most of the time. Especially now that Solloway is gone.

At CCCC (CIA), lighting is also pretty poor. Again, I have heard players complain about it. Too dark and with some glare possible for day games. No fans sit really close to the action. In Row B of Section 116 at the CIC, we are 8-10 yards closer than the closest seats at CIA, if memory serves. Doors occupy the best spots in the house, halfway up on the 50-yard line. Who designed that building? And, who approved the design?

I believe the setup is the usual. Two first round games at noon and two at 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 4. Probably 1-8 and 4-5 in first set, 2-7 and 3-6 in second. It is always hardest on the 6 seed, which must beat 3, 2, 1 (or the team that beat 2 or 1) to win a tournament and also must play last game on first day, second game 18 hours after end of first. The four winners play Sunday afternoon semis. Then, for ESPN, wait until Friday afternoon (March 10) for championship played on home floor of higher remaining seed (likely UNH). Wonder if UNH or AE will use the Whittemore Center for the final game. Wbb only played there for a little while, then moved back to Laudholm which is half a notch (maybe) above UVM as a gym and several notches below Mount Blue High School (except for capacity). UNH couldn't justify the rent wanted by the corporation that owns Whittemore for wbb games that draw 200 people. For AE championship, UNH might draw 1,000. Might.

I believe Albany-Bingo semi game had largest crowd last year at Binghamton, 900+. Albany blew away Bingo. Crowd left early.

I can't agree with you about the Civic Center in Disgusta. It's always cold, and everything has a tinny sound. Sight lines, especially facing south, can be very fluid as fans move about in stands, jump up and down, etc. At the north end, I have seen players crash right into fans going for a hot dog. Players are looking up enough at the basket that the sight lines may not be a problem at the north end. Lighting seems harsh, but I haven't heard high school players complain. UMaine women played there a time or two (Kent State in 2002, probably others) and players didn't much care for the building, though that might have been mostly because it was unfamiliar yet still counted as a home game. Only Heather Ernest and Julie Veilleux had played there that I know of, though Melissa Heon (Somersworth, N.H.) may have as well. I will say that when the building is nearly full, it warms up, and people don't move about so much in the end zone. Sound quality is softer, too, when the barn is full.

I'll take CIC over any of them, Expo second.

Bob Neal
New Sharon
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Re: Bad Night for Both UMaine Basketball teams vs. UNH

Postby bcbc55 » Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:12 am

Bob: Another A-1 post. Excellent insight that most of us don't have about the Maine Women's Program and for the America East Women's conference.

Agree that CIC is the best as long as the floor set up is the same as it is for all Maine men's and women's home games.

The reason the Expo floor is soft is because it is not setting on cement, there is downstairs underneath, locker rooms, etc. I am sure they have fixed the dead spots (like the old Barn in Bangor had) for the NBA's D franchise the Maine Red Claws.

I played in the Expo in 1955 in high school when at Bangor High we played Westbrook there. It had a balcony ll the way around it.

Great basketball atmosphere there today and as I posted the best shooting facility of the 4 including Bangor.

I would not pay to see a basketball game of any level at the CIA in Portland's Hockey arena. You hit the nail right on the head with your description of that non basketball facility for fans, players, officials and coaches, etc.

Always enjoy your interesting and informative posts about Maine Women's basketball.
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Re: Bad Night for Both UMaine Basketball teams vs. UNH

Postby dunbar » Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:56 pm

The front row of seats at the CCCC (and Alfond, for that matter) is the same distance to the floor as the CIC. Remember, if the CIC had ice, the boards would be right at the bottom of the front row and still be the standard 200'x85'. Perception is a funny thing, because that 42" dasher always makes things seem father away.
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