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Lexington, Ky. -- They were outnumbered and overmatched, but the North Carolina A&T Aggies were never outhustled in their lopsided loss to Louisville Thursday night.
Despite the outcome, fans who made the trip Rupp Arena say there's still a lot to be proud about.
"We are sad that they lost but very happy that they made it this far," Caroline Coston, an A&T alumna who now lives in Ohio, said. "Hopefully, this will be very positive for their recruitment next year."
Coston's husband, Hali Robinson, expressed that same hope to build momentum for the basketball program.
"I'm just happy for Greensboro, the basketball team, the city, and what it has done for them," Robinson said. "Hopefully this will allow the basketball coach to get in a few more living rooms and get some other basketball players that can really take the basketball team to another level."
For Aggies cheerleaders who have followed the team all season long, the loss was more sweet than bitter.
"[The basketball players] have improved so much from the beginning of the season," cheerleading captain Quanetra Respass said. "They worked so much harder than i thought they could, and I'm just real proud of them."
Respass says the successes of the basketball team's postseason run have helped her define the meaning of "Aggie Pride."
"'Aggie Pride' to me is just being supportive and always keeping your head up and never giving up no matter what happens," Respass said. "And that's what the team did: they fought all the way through the end."
While the Aggies didn't win the game, they certainly won over the crowd in Rupp Arena. Every time the band played, every time the cheerleaders hit the floor and every time mascot Aggie Dog busted a dance move, the Aggies got a huge ovation from the pro-Louisville crowd.
That's just one more thing for North Carolina A&T to be proud about.
WFMY News 2