For Fans, Summit League Tournament is a Tradition, Snow or Shine

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Thousands of people are in Sioux Falls this week for the Summit League college basketball tournament, many travelling from out-of-town to catch the games at the Denny.

“I came yesterday because of the weather, yeah,” said Bonnie Richter, a USD Coyote fan from Redfield, South Dakota.

Like many other summit league fans, Bonnie Richter’s plans were thrown a little off course by the snow.

She came to cheer on her team, but didn’t plan on staying in town.

“A good friend of mine found rooms, which was fine. We’re over there by the Fairfield by the Pentagon, a very nice place, and very easy to get here.”

Like Bonnie, many fans aren’t letting the white stuff keep them from cheering on their team.

“This is the first time we decided to stay in Sioux Falls and that’s specifically because of the weather,” said Joan Baker, a SDSU fan from Brookings. “So far it’s been a very good decision.”

The Summit League Tournament is a tradition for most, snow or shine.

“We booked a year out, it’s just our plan, we just do that,” said Al Kurtenbach, a Jacks fan.

Others found themselves here, waiting out Mother Nature.

“We’ve been here since Saturday,” said USD student Clayton Hakin. “I’ve been trying to get to Canada for spring break, so we’re here watching the games while the roads are bad.”

The faceoff on the hardwood, with a Summit League title on the line, brings in fans year after year and lifelong fans don’t let anything keep them from coming.

“Well, I suppose, if we were 6 feet under we wouldn’t come,” said Kurtenbach.