Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. Monday at St. Thomas for the NCAA Division III men’s basketball Final Four tournament next weekend in Salem, Va.
The Tommies (28-3) earned their first trip to the Final Four since 1994 with Saturday’s Elite Eight win over Augustana in Rock Island, Ill. They will play Middlebury at 7 p.m. CDT Friday in the Salem Civic Center, following the 5 p.m. game between Williams and Wooster. The winners will play for the title at 2:30 p.m. CDT Saturday.
St. Thomas has been allotted 300 advance-sale tickets, which will be on sale from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in the office of associate athletic director JoAnn Andregg, Room 320, Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex. Advance tickets, payable only by cash or check, will guarantee fans a spot in the St. Thomas section.
Tickets will be sold in Friday-Saturday packages – $25 for adults and $12.50 for students – and will cover all three games. No single-game tickets will be on sale. Tickets also will be available at the gate in Salem; the civic center holds 7,000 fans.
Salem is a suburb of Roanoke, which has limited air service from the Twin Cities via Delta, United and U.S. Air. Travelers will find less-expensive fares by flying into cities such as Greensboro, Charlotte or Raleigh, N.C.; Charleston, W. Va., or even Washington, D.C., and then driving several hours.
St. Thomas will determine whether to charter a bus that would leave the Twin Cities on Thursday. A complicating factor is that spring break will begin on Friday and many students already have other plans.
The team will leave for Salem on Wednesday, with activities on Thursday including a practice and a banquet. The team will stay at the Doubletree Roanoke, which sold out of rooms on Sunday.
Most hotels in the Roanoke-Salem area are within 15 miles of the civic center and have between 20 and 50 rooms, so fans should call early and ask for the NCAA tournament rate. Here are options for hotels; all rates are per night and before taxes, with some rates lower on Saturday night:
- Best Western Plus Inn at Valley View: Rates: $79.99 a night, 540-362-2400.
- Cambria Suites: $89-99, 540-400-6226.
- Comfort Inn-Roanoke Airport: $79, 888-217-5551.
- Comfort Inn Troutville, Roanoke: $79.99, 540-992-5600.
- Country Inn & Suites, Roanoke: $90, 540-366-5678.
- Courtyard by Marriott, Roanoke Airport: $89, 540-266-9002.
- Days Inn, Salem: $59.95, 540-986-1000.
- Fairfield Inn & Suites, Roanoke North: $99, 540-362-4200.
- Hampton Inn, Salem: $109, 540-776-6500.
- Holiday Inn Express, Roanoke: $79, 540-982-0100.
- Holiday Inn Express, Salem: $139, 540-562-3229.
- Holiday Inn, Roanoke Valley View: $89, 540-362-4500.
- Holiday Inn Tanglewood, Roanoke: $78, 540-767-6450.
- Hyatt Place-Roanoke Airport, Valley View Mall: $89, 540-366-4700.
- La Quinta-Salem: $99, 540-387-1600.
- MainStay Suites, Roanoke Airport: $79, 540-527-3030.
- Quality Inn, Roanoke Airport: $59.99, 540-366-8861.
- Ramada Inn Conference Center: $54.95, 540-343-0121.
- Residence Inn by Marriott, Roanoke Airport: $99, 540-266-9002.
- Super 8 Motel: $60, 540-563-8888.
- Super 8, Salem: $59.98, 540-389-0297.