Less than 24 hours until the big game, Pats fans ready for #5

(WPRI) – Less than 24 hours until game time and Patriots fans are ready for the drive for five with some fans literally driving hundreds of miles for the big game.

Jay Richey says he drove nine-and-a-half hours to Houston, with “no hotel room; don’t care, we’re going to have a great time.”

Others, didn’t go as far.

“If we can’t go to Houston, this is the next best place to be,” said Terri Monahan, who made the trip from Ashburn, Virginia to Gillette to cheer on New England with Pats nation.

The Pats Pro Shop at Patriot Place was going through merchandise faster than they could stock it Saturday evening, with fans stopping in to pick up that last-minute merchandise. Tom Brady jerseys were being refilled by the armful.

Besides the team, the players, former players, players’ families and friends flocking to Houston, there’s another large group of people making the trip from Foxboro to Houston who are necessary to game day.

“We’re so lucky to be here it’s awesome,” said Patriots cheerleader Jennifer Pinto, from North Kingstown. “The environment, the atmosphere, it’s great.”

“We went to the children’s hospital yesterday, it was awesome everyday is something new,” added Pats cheerleader Alyssa Petrarca from Coventry.

Patriots fans originally from Warwick, who are now living in Houston, tell Eyewitness News they are in the right place, at the right time.

“It’s so exciting,” said Mindy Gagliarei, “You never have your team in the city you live in in a Super Bowl.”

Though their media obligations were over Saturday afternoon, Patriots owner Robert Kraft, an injured Rob Gronkowski, and former 3-time Super Bowl champion Kevin Faulk were in town getting the crowd pumped.