Around the Square, Members of Harvard Community Gather to Support Men’s Basketball

Hundreds of energetic Crimson fans from the Harvard and Cambridge community gathered in dorms, in restaurants, and around laptops in the Yard and across the Square on Saturday night to watch Harvard’s men basketball team face Michigan State in the third-round NCAA Tournament game.

Although the Crimson ended its bid at the tournament after losing 73-80 to the Spartans in Spokane, Wash., fans said they were proud of the team’s performance in its final matchup this season and supported the team even through the game’s final minutes.

Harvard Athletics invited students to watch the game at the Cambridge Queen’s Head pub, John Harvard’s Brewery & Ale House, and the Student Organization Center at Hilles. Fans also watched at other Square restaurants.

“The energy was palpable,” Anne Carroll Ingersoll ’12 said of the atmosphere in John Harvard’s Brewery, where she watched the matchup with fellow alumnus Kristen E. Arn ’12. “I haven’t felt like this since actually attending a game [at Harvard].”

According to Ashley Tart, the general manager of John Harvard’s, the brewery hosted the largest watch party in Cambridge. To her, the night was “non-comparable,” as more than 100 fans donning Crimson shirts and foam fingers crowded every corner of the restaurant, including the entryway, to cheer on the team.

In fact, the servers were often so busy delivering food and drinks to their patrons that they did not always know the status of the game.

“To be honest, I [couldn't] watch the game,” said Katie David, a server at the brewery who noted that the crowd got much louder and rowdier as the game progressed into the second half. “Not a lot of places have an open space like this with a lot of TVs. Most just have a bar and three or four TVs.”