MINNEAPOLIS -- The northern Minnesota town of Red Lake is pulling together to support the boys basketball team in the state tournament.

On Friday, they lost to Minneapolis North in the Class A semi-finals at the Target Center. Despite the loss, fans say the four-hour drive was worth it.

It's the third straight year the Warriors have made it to the state tournament, but the first time they advanced to play at the Target Center.

“It’s something great that they made it this far and we're all proud of our boys,” says Gail Stillday, who has a grandson and great nephew on the team.

For Red Lake, the season has been about more than just playing for wins. They're playing for one of their own, lost too soon.

Sophomore Aaron White, the son of head coach Roger White, passed away from cancer right before the season started.

"It's been up and down. I know he's here with me," White says. "I do know he's here watching over me and watching over these boys and he's smiling."

Minneapolis North advances to play in Saturday’s Class A championship at 11 a.m. at the Target Center.