Fans turn out for first day of C-USA tournament - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Fans turn out for first day of C-USA tournament

The first pitch of the 2017 C-USA baseball tournament has been thrown. (Image Source: WLOX News) The first pitch of the 2017 C-USA baseball tournament has been thrown. (Image Source: WLOX News)
The Rice Owls kicked off the competition, defeating Florida Atlantic University.  (Image Source: WLOX News) The Rice Owls kicked off the competition, defeating Florida Atlantic University. (Image Source: WLOX News)
While all the action will be happening at MGM Park, some fans might take the time to see what the coast has to offer. (Image Source: WLOX News) While all the action will be happening at MGM Park, some fans might take the time to see what the coast has to offer. (Image Source: WLOX News)
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

The first pitch of the 2017 C-USA baseball tournament has been thrown, with the Rice Owls kicking off the competition in a win against Florida Atlantic University.

The crowd may have been slim, but it was only day one.

“I'm just a big Rice baseball fan," said Betty Bixby. "If they're playing, I like to be there,” 

Rice fans far outweighed FAU fans, probably because the trip from Houston, Tx. is much shorter than that from Boca Raton Fla. Even so, spectators seemed happy to be in Biloxi.

“We've been to the tournament quite a few times. They had it in Jackson for a while, no one really came to Jackson. I think people would rather go to Biloxi,” said Greg Thieleman.

Robin Chandler’s son plays center-field for Rice.

“This is my first conference USA tournament, I have not made the last two. Ryan's a junior and it's exciting. Biloxi is a great city. I've never been here before and it's a wonderful facility,” said Chandler.

While all the action will be happening at MGM Park, some fans might take the time to see what the Coast has to offer.

“We plan to check out the sights and just kind of see some things to do. I understand Vanessa Williams is performing Friday night, and so many look into getting some tickets for that,” said Chandler.

Others say they're just hoping their team makes it to Sunday so they have a reason to stick around.

“We're just here to watch baseball. We will watch baseball and that's about it....I'm not a gambler so I will not be leaving any money behind. I know quite a few of our fans are, but that's not me,” said Thieleman.

MGM Park has a three year contract with Conference USA. It is the first year the tournament will be held in Biloxi.

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