WASHINGTON, D.C. - When Butler's Matt Howard scored on a putback at the buzzer to eliminate Old Dominion from the NCAA Tournament, he also ended an exciting ride for Hollidaysburg graduate Chris Kovensky.
The 26-year-old Kovensky is a grad student at Old Dominion after graduating from Albright College. He has been helping the basketball team this season.
"It was my final requirement for my masters program at Old Dominion," Kovensky said. "It's a 400-hour internship with whatever sports organization you choose. I logged the 400 hours and the staff asked me to stay on, and they are a great bunch of guys and a great team so I couldn't help but extend it into the spring."
The Hollidaysburg graduate had plenty of different experiences with the team this year.
"I got to enjoy a lot of basketball at its best on the operation side, players' side and coaches' side," Kovensky said. "The highlight of my time was learning the nuisances of college basketball and getting coaching tips from [ODU] coach [Blaine] Taylor."
Kovensky is hoping to parlay the experience into something more.
"I've applied to some jobs in basketball operations, but I would also like to get into coaching. If that's in Division III or Division II, that's fine with me. You have to start somewhere."
Old Dominion's loss didn't only leave a bad taste with the players.
"It's gut wrenching," Kovensky said. "We're No. 1 in rebounding margin, and I think they beat us on the boards. We just weren't ourselves. We got it tied, but they just made one more shot."