Lady Trojans wear pink for breast cancer awareness
Sarah Beth Slinkard, contributing writer — In honor of national Breast Cancer Awareness Month, UALR is set to host its second annual “Kicks and Digs for a Cure” fundraiser on Oct. 21 and 22. In lieu of the usual pink ribbon associated with breast cancer, the participating athletic teams will sport bright pink jerseys during the two home games. Ticket proceeds at each game will be donated toward breast cancer research.
The event will kick off with the UALR women’s soccer team against North Texas at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 21, at Burns Park. The women’s volleyball team will face Florida International at 7 p.m on Friday, Oct. 22. at the Jack Stephens Center. Both teams will don pink jerseys for the games, and fans are encouraged to wear pink as well. Additionally, the first 50 fans at the soccer game and the first 100 fans at the volleyball game will receive a free pink t-shirt.
Andrea Nunez, director of sales and senior woman administrator of the UALR athletic department, explained that these games are different from typical home games because of the community support not only for UALR athletics but also for awareness of breast cancer research.
“The UALR Department of Athletics is involved with a number of great charities in central Arkansas and nationwide,” Nunez said. “This is another great cause that UALR student-athletes enjoy supporting and Trojan fans enjoy as well.”
The volleyball game connected with The Side-Out Foundation’s Dig Pink® program. The Side-Out Foundation, founded in 2004, serves to help high school and college volleyball teams nationwide spread breast cancer awareness. The foundation offers fundraising support and provides educational material for players to help them advocate support for breast cancer.
Proceeds from the volleyball game will go directly to the Side-Out Foundation, which uses donations to award grants to medical research organizations searching for a cure for breast cancer. One can donate to UALR’s Side-Out fundraising campaign at www.side-out.org/application/teams/team_page/2097.
Kristi Block, a junior on the volleyball team described the breast cancer awareness game last year as a huge success. “There was a lot of fan support and everybody wore pink,” she remembered. “We pray as a team before every game and last year we prayed especially for breast cancer victims and survivors.”
Sophomore Paige Gantar said, “I feel proud to wear the pink jersey because it represents all the women who have been affected by the disease. It feels good to know that we’re able to support such a major cause.”
Students and fans are encouraged to show support for breast cancer awareness and UALR by attending the home games, wearing pink, and donating to the cause.