GRAND FORKS, ND--Fighting Hawks fans from around the world are flocking to Las Vegas, but they met up with the gophers in midair.
Hundreds of Fighting Hawks fans left the GFK Airport on Thursday--they headed to Sin City for the largest rivalry game of the season.
"Go hawks we gotta win!" said fan, Mary Rudnik.
The fans headed to Vegas armed with green gear and green beer.
"We are big fans of UND. But plus Minnesota is a great rivalry and we're hoping to win," said Rudnik.
They're going to see Saturday's game against the Minnesota Gophers.
"David versus Goliath. Minnesota North Dakota. It's quite a rivalry," said fan, Tommy Kenville.
One of the biggest rivalries in college hockey.
Some fans have followed the hawks all over the country from New York to Florida.
"Went to Tampa and watched them win there. I'm a good friend with Coach Berry so I always like seeing him succeed," said Kenville.
A special charter flight of nearly 170 fans left on Thursday.
Some even paid more than 1 thousand dollars for a ticket.
The airport was even decked out in UND gear to send them off in style.
"I won this hat. I won this," said Rudnik.
One fan has even been to more than a thousand games, and couldn't miss his chance to get to the Orleans arena.
"Anytime they're playing an exhibition game or frozen four or playoffs or stuff like that. It's usually a good time to see friends and cheer on the Sioux," said fan, Johnny Ryan.
But it's the sense of community that keeps fans on the road together.
"I've got some friends that are Gopher fans that haven't switched over yet. I'm hoping to move them over to be Sioux fans this weekend," said Ryan.
A match-up that's sure to be a good time.
"It'll be a good game no matter what. It'll be intense," said Kenville.