The Huskies played before their first sellout crowd at Webster Bank Arena today since they lost to Duke in the 2006 regional final before 9,091. UConn defeated Maryland 76-50 before 8,594. (The crowd size is different now due to the reconfiguration of the arena)
UConn drew 4,563 in the first round last season and 4,372 in the second round. In 2008, crowds of 6,556 (first round) and (second round) were on hand.
UConn coach Geno Auriemma was extremely pleased with the atmosphere.
“Today was amazing,’’ Auriemma said. “And, again, I don’t know the reason for it. I don’t know … Obviously, ticket prices were perfect compared to last year. The teams were the right of four teams, maybe. The game times were perfect. Maybe just everything came together. But the atmosphere was amazing. It really, really was. They’ve done a magnificent job down here with this building. You look around and it’s a really, really, really great place to play.’’
The venue is expected to be at least “near capacity’’ Monday when UConn meets Kentucky in the regional final.