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Hoop Cat fans come down on Columbus for huge video game


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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCAX) – March Madness is underway and both the Men’s and Women’s UVM basketball groups are preparing yourself to strike the court. The ladies play UConn Saturday in Storrs, Connecticut and the males play Marquette Friday afternoon in Columbus, Ohio.

Ohio State’s home grass is normally a sea of red, however throughout March Madness, every color of the rainbow remains in Columbus. And on Thursday, the Green Mountain’s green and gold were on screen

Craig Popp, a New Englander-turned Midwesterner lives simply minutes far from the Nationwide Arena in downtown Columbus. “Been a Vermont fan pretty much my entire life, even before Sorrentine hit the shot,” Popp said.

The previous Massachusetts local has actually seen the Catamounts 10 times and this time he’s hoping they win right in his yard. “Watching the brackets, I knew there were games in Columbus. I was praying maybe we’ll get the Catamounts here and it was one of the last games they showed in the broadcast. The fact that they said Columbus, Ohio — I was very excited,” Popp said.

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And Popp wasn’t the only Cat fan seeing them practice Thursday. UVM alum Brent Havey transferred to Columbus right after he finished. “It’s amazing, yeah. They’ve been nine times. I’ve seen them win once, I’d like to get another one,” Harvey said.

And he’s devoted, too. In addition to seeing the Cats practice, he’s removing from work Friday. “They’re going to have a party at noon before the game and hopefully we win and come back Sunday,” Havey said.

But on Saint Patrick’s day weekend, with 8 groups travelling through town, it’s tough to understand which one fans are rooting for.

We’ll speak with Vermont gamers on the Channel 3 Morning News Friday.

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You can enjoy the huge video game Friday on Channel 3 at 2:45 p.m.

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