Grand Rapids Community College’s recently renovated Gerald R. Ford Fieldhouse will play host for the 2019 National Junior College Athletic Association Division II Region XII basketball tournament March 7-9.
Both the men’s and women’s team qualified for the tournament and will have the chance to win the Region XII championship on their home court. There will be 16 teams altogether with eight men’s teams and eight women’s teams.
The men’s team clinched the Michigan Community College Athletic Association Western Conference Championship on Monday, Feb. 25, the program’s first since the 2003-2004 season. They will own the No. 1 seed in the men’s bracket.
GRCC athletic director Bill Firn is excited for the school’s opportunity to host the tournament and explained the process of how the school came to be the hosts.
“In our… region by-law, it goes out for bid every two years,” Firn said. “So we’ll be hosting this year and next year. What we did was we worked with the West Michigan Sports Commission to help put together a bid package that I presented at a region AD meeting. So basically, you pass out the competing bids… step out of the room, and all the other AD’s, they just do a vote.”
The vote was for GRCC to host the tournament for the first time in school history. Students are encouraged to go and support the Raiders and GRCC President Bill Pink is trying to make that as easy as possible.
“Students of other surrounding colleges… they come, it’s gonna be a discounted rate (of $3),” Firn said. “However, President Pink would like to pay for all of the GRCC students who come out. And those are for our games, so if they came early in the day, they would need to pay on their own. But, if they come to our game, then they’re going to have free admission through Dr. Pink picking up the tab.”
GRCC students must show a valid student I.D. to be granted free admission while all others will be charged $5 which grants access for all the games that day. Children six and under are free.
For other information including parking and game schedules, visit the GRCC Raiders webpage.