MADRID, SPAIN - DAY 1 - The Seton Hall men's basketball team landed in Madrid, Spain Tuesday morning at about 6:30 am. While most members of the travel party hadn't slept much on the six hour flight everyone, the student-athletes especially, were thoroughly excited about the opportunity to play in a new country.
Once in Madrid, the team and the Pirate Blue travel party boarded charter buses for the hotel, the AC Hotel Cuzco by Marriott located downtown. After check in and a few quick naps, everyone boarded the bus to a local Madrid Sports Café to grab lunch. After a few more brief naps, it was time for practice. The majority of the Pirate Blue members attended practice as Coach Willard and staff helped the team work off some of the jet lag still lingering from the time change.
In the evening, everyone set off to an authentic Spanish Steakhouse for dinner. After dinner, members of the team and travel party enjoyed walking the streets of the historic Spanish capital. Tomorrow is Assumption Day in Spain, which is the principal feast day of the Virgin Mother. We all soon learned that the evening before this holy holiday, is one of great celebration in the streets of Madrid.
All of the players, especially the taller ones, stood out in the crowd and drew lots of looks from the locals. The team became very popular and stopped to take pictures with many onlookers including a street performer doing his impersonation of Johnny Depp from Pirates of Caribbean.
Tomorrow's schedule includes a sightseeing tour of Madrid and then rest and a pre-game meal before the Pirates take on CB Torrejon at 7pm (1pm EST). You can follow updates of the game via twitter: @SHUathletics and a post-game story will be posted on www.SHUpirates.com.