PHOENIX — The rain fell steadily on Friday, putting a damper on many of the NFL-planned fan activities. Places that were mobbed 24 hours earlier with people playing games or buying food were mostly quiet.

But five New England Patriots fans from Matinicus Island weren’t complaining.

One, they weren’t getting hit with another snowstorm. Two, they were here for Sunday’s Super Bowl, which will pit their team against the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

“We decided at the beginning of the season that if the Pats go, we go,” said Josh Ames, a lobsterman. “So, here we are.”

The group included Marty Molloy, Tyler Bemis, David Ames (Josh’s cousin) and his fiancee, Stephanie Perry. They will be married on Valentine’s Day.

Josh Ames, David Ames and Perry have tickets. They bought them on the secondary market, paying over $3,000 for each right after the Patriots defeated the Indianapolis Colts 45-7 in the AFC championship game.

It wasn’t until Tuesday, during the blizzard, that Molloy and Bemis joined in.

“We were sitting around a bar and they were saying, ‘You’ve got to go, you’ve got to go,’ ” Molloy said. “Next thing you know, we’re booking (airline) tickets.”

Molloy and Bemis are looking to buy tickets for the game. But “prices are peaking right now,” Molloy said. “We’re going to wait.”

Face value of tickets ranges between $800 and $1,900, but some tickets on the secondary market are going for up to $10,000.

Perry said it was important for them all to be here because “they’ve never lost a game we’ve been at.”

They were at the AFC championship game in 2012 when the Patriots held on to beat Baltimore when the Ravens missed a last-second game-tying field goal. They were at the regular-season game in 2013 when the Patriots trailed the Denver Broncos 24-0 and came back to win in overtime.

“So we had to be here,” she said.

Asked if she felt a little overwhelmed being the only woman in the group, she said, “I live in a man’s world on Matinicus so I’m one of them.”


They found themselves severely outnumbered by Seattle fans on Friday afternoon. A quick look at the jerseys being worn by fans walking the wet streets or attending the indoor NFL Experience – where adults or children can kick, pass, catch, punt or run through blocking dummies, view historical exhibits or purchase overpriced souvenirs – made it fairly obvious that Seattle fans have a dominating presence here. Maybe a 20-to-1 ratio.

“A lot of fans are coming in today,” Bemis said.

“Yeah,” said David Ames, “between today and tomorrow, you’re going to see a lot of Patriots fans.”

Just as he spoke, a passer-by shouted, “Go Pats!”

“See,” Bemis said, “Patriots fans are everywhere.”

When they do arrive, Seattle fans are sure to bring up Deflategate.

“We can’t let it take away from our achievements,” Molloy said.

Monte Cain, a season-ticket holder for the Seahawks since 1998, said fans outside of New England are questioning the Patriots’ credentials.

“Once you get caught doing something, you’re going to be under the radar all the time,” he said. “And it’s amazing how many little things pop up.”

He does admit that the Patriots have had remarkable success. But he hopes his team is just beginning a long run of success.

“The Seahawks have a lot of passionate fans,” he said. “And we’re finally getting some success to go with it. It used to be that you’d go to a mall or a grocery store and you’d see maybe one or two people out of a hundred wearing a Seahawks jersey.

“Now you go there and that’s all you see.”

And he said it’s nice to see that continue in Phoenix. He attended last year’s Super Bowl in New Jersey, won by the Seahawks 43-8 over Denver, and said there was a 5-to-1 ratio of Broncos fans to Seahawks fans.

“They really stood out with those god-awful orange jerseys,” he said. “Seattle has a connection with Arizona. People in New England, they might have a second home in Florida. With Seattle, a lot of people come here to get away from the rain.”

Maybe they brought the rain with them this time.


But that wasn’t going to deter New England fans from coming, with or without tickets.

Gary Foss, who lived for 15 years in Maine (eight in Pittsfield, seven in Berwick) until he moved to Easton, Massachusetts, six months ago, doesn’t have a ticket, but he wasn’t going to miss being here.

He was joined by his brother, Allen Foss, who once lived in Biddeford but now lives in Jacksonville, Florida.

They’re content to soak in the pregame festivities and watch the game at a sports bar.

“It’s just as much fun,” Gary Foss said. “And everyone is going to be yelling at each other.”

Molloy figures the Patriots’ fans are going to hear some grief over the weekend. In fact, he’s already heard some.

“There was this bartender at the Philly airport,” he said. “She said she didn’t like cheaters.

“Needless to say, she didn’t get a tip.”