ORU Students Rally Around The Golden Eagles

Thursday, March 15th 2007, 8:16 pm
By: News On 6

It's rare that on the first day of March Madness Oklahoma only has one team in the tournament. ORU's Golden Eagles were the only local team to make the big dance. The News On 6’s Joshua Brakhage reporsts students cheered on their Cinderella as the underdog eagles faced stiff competition.

"Last year, it was George Mason. So we could be the 2007 George Mason team to come through," said ORU senior Tony Espino.

Scheduling kept students from Sacramento. It's the middle of midterms so ORU fans had to trade courtside seats, for the cafeteria on campus.

"It's nice to see people here cheering, people are being vocal and it's really nice to see people enjoying the game and coming together as a student body to get behind them," said ORU sophomore Tyler Brann.

It's not the Mabee Center, but fans say when things are going good, the school cafeteria gets even louder.

"Aw, it's crazy. I mean, you have two TVs set up over here, just a lot of people, a lot of excitement, a lot of Mabee Maniacs so it's really good," said Espino.

Some still couldn't set aside homework, but that didn't stop dozens of students along with faculty staff and alums from capturing the moment. And all the excitement still couldn't distract amateur analysts.

"They're definitely not in their rhythm right now which we need to keep up what we're doing and limit the turnovers is a big deal too," said Brann.

The Golden Eagles led throughout the first half, but a buzzer-beater before halftime turned the momentum toward the competition.

"It was a quiet halftime," said ORU senior Lucas Forsthoff.

Forsthoff was one of the nervous faces who watched as the Cinderella story became a nailbiter, then a runaway.

"It was a sad ending. But very, very exciting,” said Forsthoff. “Tons of fun, too."

"We've got good guys coming in next year, from what I've heard, and hopefully it will just continue and become kind of a winning tradition here, and we get back to the tournament every year," said Brann.

True fans sure the Eagles will soar again, this time next year.

The ORU women's team has yet to tip off in the tournament. They'll play Purdue on Saturday.