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Belmont faithful gathers at Bottle Cap for MBB watch party

 PHOTO: Faithful Bruin fans convene at Bottle Cap on 12th Avenue South on Wednesday night.
PHOTO: Faithful Bruin fans convene at Bottle Cap on 12th Avenue South on Wednesday night.

While Belmont does a great job in supporting its players at home, there’s been a lingering question that needs an answer.

How do fans support the Bruins when they play on the road?

In an attempt to help the fandom travel, Belmont hosted a watch party at local Nashville restaurant Bottle Cap to watch the men’s Basketball team face off vs. Missouri State on Wednesday evening.

Starting at 5:00 p.m., coaches from Belmont, alumni, season ticket holders and a handful of students showed up ready to watch, but most spectators didn’t arrive until tip-off at 6:00 p.m.

From there, a majority of the restaurant began to fill in, reaching a total capacity of roughly 70 fans coming to support the Bruins.

Entering this game after a dominant revenge win over Illinois State, the men were looking to secure a win over the Bears in order to stay in the running for a top seed in the Missouri Valley Conference.

With five more tough games to play to close the season, fans’ emotions were more than elevated as fans watched the bear’s brawl.

“Stop playing zone,” were the words that passionately left the mouth of Jack Hanson as Missouri State hit another three in the second half.

Hanson – a Belmont Alumni who graduated last semester, found himself having a fun time with his friends as they watched the game.

“This was a great idea for them to put together. I really appreciate what they already do for home games and having an event like this shows that Belmont is trying new ideas,” Hanson expressed.

How did Belmont market the event?

It was a bit unorthodox, as Henry Wilmes – a Belmont senior majoring in Music Business who sent out the emails – confirmed the only people who received an email were season ticket holders and alumni, explaining the proportionately older fan turnout.

Senior Brady Firenze echoed a similar sentiment regarding the void of young Belmont Blood.

“This is event is cool, but it doesn’t feel like a Belmont event because of the lack of current students,” Firenze said.

Since the watch party is a new concept, Belmont didn’t want to flood the venue, Firenze says he understands.

In the future, he hopes that Belmont can find a way to properly mix all walks of Bruin life in for future watch parties.

As those present watched Belmont fall short to Missouri State in a 61-59 nail-biter, one thing is for certain.

This watch party experiment may be a new strategy for viewing away games for the Belmont community.

Moving forward, there will be more avenues for fans to support their team — even if the game is only shown on the TV screen.

The next opportunity for Belmont to get back in the win column will be on homecoming against the University of Illinois Chicago on Saturday.

This article was written by Seth Thorpe

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