The University of Nevada Wolf Pack basketball team was at the Lawlor Events Center, playing the number one team in the nation on Wednesday night. North Carolina was the first top-ranked team to visit Lawlor in more than fifteen years.
Even though the Pack fell 84-61 it was still a pretty special night for the sellout crowd.
"We got here way early," said Zack Boyd. a UNR Junior. "We couldn't afford to miss this game. Number one team in the nation. You can't miss that."
Some students made extreme sacrifices to watch the game. Senior Joel Cochran and his friends were the first people into the Events Center, but it definitely came at a cost.
"We came out at about five o'clock yesterday at night," said Cochran. "We set up our tents and the police said we couldn't set up our tent so we ended up sitting in our chairs in the freezing cold."
Fans started filing into Lawlor two hours before tipoff, about an hour earlier than usual. It was a special moment for students and veteran fans like Bruce Long who's been coming to games since Lawlor opened in 1983.
"I think this is the biggest game we've had in Reno in 30 years," said Long. "We've had a couple of number ones come into town, but no team as dominating as North Carolina."
Some fans were talking upset, but most expected the top-ranked Tar Heels to cover the 16 point spread. And even though Nevada came up short, Pack fans will never forget the night they saw arguably the best program in college basketball.
"It's just a good time," said Ben Phillips, a UNR alum. "You know we're hanging out with all of our fans; just having a good time. That's really why we came."
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