Huskies Return To Campus... Finally!
Roughly 15 hours after the Washington Husky men's basketball team dropped its Sweet 16 loss to second-seeded West Virginia in Syracuse, N.Y., the team returned to campus following a long night of travel.
After fulfilling the NCAA's postgame media obligations, the team, staff, band, cheerleaders and several supporters returned to the team headquarters (DoubleTree Syracuse) to change clothes and pack for the return trip home. At midnight (ET), the team bus departed for the airport and a return charter flight to Seattle.
The flight made a scheduled landing in Minneapolis, Minn. to take on fuel. However, the flight crew and mechanics noticed a problem with the aircraft that prevented it from making the rest of the trip to Seattle.
So, the entire travel party waited approximately five hours for two smaller replacement planes to arrive and bring them home.
Most of the travelers remained on the airplane for the duration, chatting, sleeping, playing cards, watching movies, etc. Some of the party departed and waited inside the charter service holding area (since it was a charter, the plane did not use a normal gate at the Minneapolis airport).
Once the first of the two smaller aircraft arrived, the team and staff boarded the new airplace and completed the rest of the journey.
The travel-weary group arrived at Hec Edmundson Pavilion at approximately 9:30 a.m. (PT) to a waiting group of about 50 or so athletics staff members who cheered in support as the team departed the bus. Two local television stations were also present to grab a quick soundbite of the team's return.
Kudos to the athletic staffers responsible for the travel logistics for dealing with a difficult situation and getting the team home in the middle of the night.
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