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Spokane to host more NCAA Tournament basketball games in 2024, 2025

University of Idaho will be the host school, meaning that Gonzaga, Eastern, and WSU will be eligible to play in Spokane.
Credit: AP
Gonzaga coach Mark Few watches during the first half of the team's West Regional final against Texas Tech in the NCAA men's college basketball tournament Saturday, March 30, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

SPOKANE, Wash. — Spokane Veteran's Memorial Arena will see more high level basketball in the next few years.

The arena has been selected to host the first and second rounds of the men's NCAA basketball tournament in 2024 and a regional in the women's tournament in 2025.

University of Idaho has been selected as the host school, which means that Gonzaga, Eastern and WSU will be eligible to play NCAA Tournament games in Spokane.

Spokane was slated to host the first and second rounds of the NCAA men's Tournament in Spokane this March before the coronavirus canceled the tournament. Spokane's economy lost $20 million from the event being canceled, according to Visit Spokane. 2024 will be the first time the men's tournament will return to Spokane. The Gonzaga men have never played in Spokane for the NCAA Tournament.

The women's tournament is slated to return to Spokane in 2021 for the regionals (Sweet Sixteen, Elite Eight). This means that if Gonzaga plays well enough the women could host the first and second rounds in McCarthey and then travel down 10 minutes away from campus for the first two weeks of the tournament this season.

It appears as though there will only be two regional sites for the women's NCAA Tournament beginning in 2023, meaning that the regional sites will host 16 teams instead of eight.