Arena hosting NCAA tourney games briefly evacuated

The fire alarm went off the day between games at the Erwin Center and during Miami's allocated 90-minute practice period inside.

Published On: Mar 23 2013 04:15:26 PM EDT
AUSTIN, Texas -

A fire alarm triggered a brief evacuation Saturday of the University of Texas arena hosting NCAA tournament games.
   
The alarm went off the day between games at the Erwin Center and during Miami's allocated 90-minute practice period inside.
   
Hurricanes coach Jim Larranaga said the evacuation was just another in a series of firsts for his team this season. He said the team had a "very good practice" despite the disruption and needing to be escorted out of the building.
   
"The neat part about our Miami players is they kept everything in stride, and had a good time outside, just hanging out with each other," Larranaga said.
   
The Hurricanes were able to get in all of their allotted practice time.
   
There were no reports of any injuries or problems with the building. The alarm was apparently activated by a minor mechanical issue.
   
Since there were no games Saturday and practices were closed, there were no fans in the building.
   
Arena workers, NCAA and team officials and media were allowed back in after about 25 minutes, though a fire truck with its lights flashing still was parked outside a main entrance. That truck pulled away soon after that.
   
NCAA officials pushed push back all scheduled media interviews with the teams by 30 minutes. Those previously set sessions began with Miami players after they finished practice.
   
Miami guard Trey McKinney Jones said he and his teammates were rapping and just having a good time while they waited outside.
   
The Hurricanes, the No. 2 seed in the East Regional, play No. 7 seed Illinois on Sunday night with a spot in the round of 16 on the line. The South Regional game before that at the Erwin Center features No. 3 seed Florida against No. 11 Minnesota.