Louisville fans fill Rupp Arena for women's NCAA Tournament Regional

Published: Mar. 25, 2018 at 5:32 PM EDT
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Instead of a sea of blue, Sunday saw a wave of red crashing into Rupp Arena.

Cardinal fans said when it was announced Louisville would be playing at Rupp Arena for the women's NCAA Tournament Regional, they knew they would be making the drive.

"As a fan you always want to be able to travel and if it was like in Boise or someplace like that, it's pretty challenging," said George Barrett. "So this close is great. Plus Rupp is such a great facility."

The vast majority of fans at Sunday's game were cheering the Cardinals, but there were a few Oregon State fans in orange.

"We kind of expected that, because we were here the other night when Louisville played," said Oregon State fan Judy Tudor

With the tournament stretching across the weekend, it's no surprise that many of the fans spent at least one night in a Lexington hotel or visited a downtown restaurant.

What is a little surprising, is how many of those Cardinal fans said they've been to Rupp before, to cheer on Kentucky.

"Seeing it so red is interesting," said Sara Merritt. "We come to three or four men’s UK games every year, I’m a big UK men’s fan."

"We really root for Kentucky except when they play Louisville, and so we were disappointed Kentucky didn’t make it further but it’s nice having at least one team we can still root for," George Barrett said.

The next time an NCAA Tournament game will be played in Lexington is 2021 when Rupp Arena will host first and second round men’s games.