FINAL: Fairmont State 79, Bellarmine 68

Despite a better second half, a tough night for the Knights brings Bellarmine’s fourth Elite Eight appearance in seven years to a close.

Thanks to all the fans who made the trip to Sioux Falls, and for everyone who packed viewing parties on campus and in bars back in Louisville.

Join us in thanking the team for an outstanding, exciting season. #ThankYouBUKnights






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HALFTIME: Fairmont State 46, Bellarmine 26

After 20 minutes, the Knights trail on the scoreboard, and in every significant stat. Let’s hope for a really big second half. The Knights have no three pointers, and have conceded eight of them.

That Knights Nation turnout, tho…







Posted in Game Reports, Photos

The life of a student bus chaperone

Matt Real’s first experience at a (non-exhibition) Bellarmine basketball game will be a significant one.


Matt Real

Real, Bellarmine’s associate director of Career Development, volunteered to be a chaperone on the student bus that left campus last night after the Knights’ quarterfinal win. They left campus at 9 p.m. and arrived this morning.

“The bus ride was great,” he said. “Students were excited. The initial excitement wore off after about two hours, and then people slept. They slept on the floor, across the seats, everywhere. They’re talking about what it could mean if they win tonight and go to the next game, and what their plans will be for the rest of the weekend.”

He’s impressed with the team, and plans to make it to games in Knights Hall next season.

“I like the school spirit, and traditions are important,” he said. “When the basketball team has success, it has meaning for your college experience.”

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Fans at the Falls

Knights fans had time before the game Thursday to explore. One of the stops was the falls at the Big Sioux River, the namesake of the city. The falls are within walking distance of the arena, so it would be silly not to pay a visit.

Posted in Photos, Students

Bellarmine fans feeling welcome in Sioux Falls


Teri Schmidt, executive director of the Sioux Falls Convention & Visitors Bureau, has noticed a certain scarlet and silver tint in her city this week.

In fact, Knights Nation was fresh on her mind when we spoke this morning.

“We just had a Bellarmine fan stop into our office and tell us how many of their fans travel to watch the team, and that there is another bus on the way as we speak for tonight’s game,” she said.

“Sioux Falls is so excited to have the NCAA D-II Elite Eight take place in our community,” said Schmidt. “We work hard to make sure all of the players and fans feel our warm hospitality and we are thankful for the incredible fan turnout.”

That hard work is paying off, according to Stephanie Pieper, Bellarmine’s director of alumni events and programs. “The Bellarmine Alumni Office has coordinated pre- and post-game festivities in Sioux Falls,” she said. “The restaurants and the entire Sioux Falls community has welcomed our fans with open arms. They have been very accommodating for our large fan base and eager to work with us to ensure we have a great experience.”

If you’re in Sioux Falls and looking for something to do, Schmidt invites you to stop by the Visitor Information Center.

“Sioux Falls is known for its namesake Falls Park, arts and culture, attractions, foodie scene, and outdoor activities,” said Schmidt. “We hope everyone has an enjoyable experience while they are here.”

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Know Your Foe: 5 things to know about Fairmont State


Photo courtesy Fairmont State; used with permission

In tonight’s national semifinal, the Bellarmine Knights take on the Fairmont State Fighting Falcons, named for a bird that is known for flying at high speed, changing direction rapidly and shooting the 3 with reckless abandon. Here are five things to know about Fairmont State:

1. They have a rich history. Fairmont State dates back to its founding in 1865 as The West Virginia Normal School. Today, it is a public university serving about 4200 friendly students in “The Friendly City,” Fairmont, West Virginia, which is about 20 miles southwest of Morgantown. A “normal,” or model school, by the way, was a term used to describe the school, not its students. Normal schools were colleges that educated teachers according to an established model. Students who wanted to pursue other degrees went to the Abnormal School, down the holler.

2. The Falcons are BU’s second straight mountain-mining opponent. Much like the Orediggers from Colorado School of Mines, the Fighting Falcons hail from a mountainous mining region. But unlike their gold-mining Rocky Mountain brethren and sistren, Fairmont is in a coal-mining region. And they go by a moniker that will have a familiar ring to the Bellarmine community: “The College on the Hill.”

3. “Oh, the humanities!” Among Fairmont State’s notable alumni is journalist Herbert Morrison, without whom we would not have Led Zeppelin. OK, maybe that’s a stretch but Morrison was the WLS radio reporter who became famous as the voice of the Hindenburg disaster, uttering the heartbreaking words, “Oh, the humanity!” The town of Fairmont also gave the world many luminaries, including Olympic gold medalist Mary Lou Retton, Alabama football coach Nick Saban and novelist John Knowles, whose tour de force “A Separate Peace” has been making readers cry since 1959.

4. Hoops excellence. The Fighting Falcons are an outstanding basketball team, bringing a number-one ranking and a top seed to the Final Four. Like the Knights, they are excellent on both offense and defense. The Falcons are third in the nation in scoring offense at 96.2 points per game, and they are also third in steals at 10.3 points per game. They also love to shoot the 3, attempting over 1,000 already on the season. By comparison, the Knights have attempted about 300 fewer.

5. They love their fathers. Fairmont, West Virginia, claims to be the site of the first Father’s Day, a celebration rooted in tragedy (and we’re not talking about Hallmark cards and hideous neckties). In 1907, a methane explosion at the Monongah Mine near Fairmont trapped and killed 362 men in the worst mining accident in US history. The town’s mourning gave birth to an annual ceremony celebrating fathers, which caught on nationally. So next time you buy a pair of socks for dear old dad, tip your hat to the memory of the miners of Monongah and the good people of Fairmont, West Virginia.





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Headline roundup: Knights advance to NCAA Final Four

Note: Thursday’s 7PM (Eastern) game is only available on CBS Sports Network. There’s no scheduled livestream. Join us for Louisville watch parties.

Louisville Catholic Sports coverage:
Bellarmine buries Mines in offensive onslaught
Elite Eight notebook

Posted in Newsclips