2013 NCAA tournament East Regional to be held in Washington D.C.

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The Verizon Center in Washington D.C. will be the site of the 2013 NCAA tournament East Regional on March 28 and 30, the NCAA announced in a statement Wednesday morning.

“The decision to delay the announcement of the East Regional site was made because the committee wanted to explore several options,” Mark Lewis, the NCAA’s executive vice president for championships and alliances, said in a release. “In the end, we think celebrating 75 years of one of the country’s favorite sporting events in our nation’s capital is fitting.”

Syracuse, Brooklyn, Madison Square Garden in Manhattan, and Newark, N.J., were reportedly also in the running for the East Regional.

Washington D.C., now joins Arlington, Texas, Los Angeles, Calif., and Indianapolis, Ind., as the locations for the regional semifinals and finals, which will take place from March 28-31

“When the committee selected hosts for the 75th tournament in 2009, there was a concerted effort to include cities with a rich history to help mark that milestone,” Lewis added.

Dayton will once again host the First Four games, set for March 19 and 20, and will be joined by seven other cities in hosting second- and third-round games from March 21-24.

The seven other sites for those games are Auburn Hills, Mich., Austin, Texas, Kansas City, Mo., Lexington, Ky., Philadelphia, Salt Lake City, and San Jose.

Those games all lead to the 2013 Final Four in Atlanta.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_