Fans gather to celebrate Rams’ efforts this season

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — The Rhode Island Rams would’ve much preferred to be in Kansas City Thursday night, but the men’s basketball team made the best of it on their home court.

It was a banner year for the Rams. Doubly so, in fact. At the start of next season, the team will raise two banners at the Ryan Center: one for their Atlantic 10 title win and another for their appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

It was the latter that brought fans to URI’s Kingston campus for a celebration Thursday night.

A video tribute to the team was played, after which the players and head coach Dan Hurley addressed the crowd.

Everyone was also given a chance to take pictures with their mascot, Rhody the Ram, and the A-10 trophy.

After handling Creighton in the first round, URI lost a hearbreaker to Oregon and was bounced from the tournament.

It was the Rams’ first A-10 Championship and appearance in the Big Dance since 1999 and the team’s first tournament win since 1998.

Once the celebration ended, it was time for Hurley and his boys to get back to work with hopes of matching, or even topping, their success this past season.

“It’s hard to turn back from what we just experienced,” Hurley told Eyewitness Sports Director Yianni Kourakis. “And with that comes the price of being fully committed and fully invested in it. This is the right group of, I think, coaches and players to invest in and I think we can be the type of program that dances quite often.”

Hear more from Dan Hurley in Yianni’s live interview above.