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Fans Brave Weather To Root For Their Team



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Saturday marked the first day of the fifth annual Summit League Tournament in Sioux Falls. The first game at noon was between South Dakota State University women against Oakland Michigan. And despite the weather, the arena was packed.

Thousands of fans packed the Sioux Falls Arena Saturday afternoon wearing yellow and blue, or black and gold.  For many, the drive to Sioux Falls wasn’t pleasant, but fans said a little bit of precipitation wasn’t going to stop them from rooting on their team.

It’s raining, it’s pouring, and that South Dakota wind is blowing, but it didn’t stop fans from filling up the Sioux Falls Arena for the first game of the 2013 Summit League Tournament.

“It wasn't a fun drive here at all, but I got here in one piece,” said Kendyl Hanson, Groton.
     
Hanson is a South Dakota State University cheerleader, and drove from Groton to Sioux Falls. She said Friday and Saturday’s storms left her a little nervous.
     
“The weather was really bad, I had to go through Summit which is always terrible,” Hanson said. “It was foggy and the wind was blowing, and I thought I was going to die while I was getting on the interstate.”

Dave Beste drove from Brookings to root on SDSU. He said he’s never missed the Jackrabbits play at the Summit League Tournament. And although he made it to Saturday’s game, he said Sunday might be a different story.
 
“I plan on driving back and tentatively driving back tomorrow, but we will see what the roads are like tomorrow,” said Beste, Brookings.

“It took us about 17 and a half hours to get here. Took a couple of stops, had a fog storm, everything. It was pretty intense,” said Kyle Rice, Rochester, MI.

Rice is a junior at Oakland University in Rochester, MI. He said the drive down surprised him, and he suspects the drive back will be no different.

 “I don't think we are aware of the weather, but I am guessing we are in for a treat though,” said Rice.

For Richard Stamps though, who was at the arena to also cheer on the Golden Grizzlies, he said the weather was the last thing that left him clenching his steering wheel.

“The worst was the congestion coming through Chicago,” said Stamps, Rochester, MI.

But like Rice, he expects the drive home may come with similar challenges.

 “Say a little prayer for us,” said Stamps.

Directors of Sioux Falls Sports Authority said they sold more tickets for the woman’s game than they had expected.


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