SALISBURY, Md. - The next two homes games for the Salisbury University men's and women's basketball teams will be very meaningful and memorable both on and off the court. The games will mark the end of the regular-season home schedule and also have been identified as events to help raise awareness and donations to fight cancer.
On Wednesday, February 13, the Sea Gulls will welcome Gallaudet University to the Maggs Center for a Capital Athletic Conference doubleheader. This is Coaches vs. Cancer night as all the proceeds received through ticket sales and donations will be donated to the American Cancer Society. The money raised provides support for cancer prevention, research, education and advocacy services in more than 3,400 local communities. The women's game tips-off at 5:30 p.m. followed by the men's game at 7:30 p.m.
"This is one of our most important endeavors we do every year," said SU men's basketball coach Steve Holmes. "Cancer is something that has affected my family over the years. This is near and dear to me. We hope people will come out and show their support for these causes."
On Saturday, February 16, the Sea Gulls are participating in the Women's Basketball Coaches Association "Think Pink" initiative as SU welcomes Villa Julie College to campus for Senior Day. SU is encouraging fans to wear something pink to show their support for breast cancer awareness. The women's game tips-off at 2 p.m. followed by the men's game at 4 p.m. The SU senior student-athletes will be recognized before each game.
"I hope we can fill Maggs from wall to wall with fans wearing pink, carrying something pink, waving pink," said SU women's basketball coach Charisse Mapp. "It would be great to fill Maggs with fans, both of these days, to show support for these causes."
The WBCA's "Think Pink" initiative is a global, unified effort for the WBCA's coaches to assist in raising breast cancer awareness on the court, across campuses, in communities and beyond. The week set aside for this year's initiative is February 8-17. There are nearly 750 programs participating in "Think Pink" across the country.
The SU women's basketball staff is pleased to have one of its alums, Amy Fenzel-Mergott '96, join them on the sidelines as honorary guest coach. Fenzel-Mergott, a breast cancer survivor, is lending her support to the cause. She is fifth on SU's women's basketball all-time scoring list. Her husband Dan Mergott '95, a former men's lacrosse All-American, was inducted into the SU Hall of Fame in 2006.
Salisbury will honor all attending breast cancer survivors at halftime of the women's basketball game. All the proceeds received through ticket sales and donations will be donated to Women Supporting Women (www.womensupportingwomen.org).
Women Supporting Women is a community served, community supported agency that serves the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Its mission is to provide awareness, friendship and free support for breast cancer survivors and their families. Women Supporting Women is supported by local businesses, community organizations and individual donations, as well as grants from the Community Foundation and Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
In addition to the "Think Pink" initiative the WBCA recently announced, in partnership with The V Foundation for Cancer Research, the launch of the Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund. This is the first time in its 26-year history that the WBCA has instituted a health initiative, with the fund serving as the newest women's initiative launched at The V Foundation.
North Carolina State University head coach Kay Yow established the fund in partnership with The V Foundation as a 501 c(3) charitable organization committed to being part of finding an answer in the fight against cancer through raising money for scientific research, assisting the underserved and unifying people for a common cause.
Yow is a past president and founding member of the WBCA, and she serves as a leader and a galvanizing voice for the association. She was an Olympic Gold Medal head coach in 1988, NCAA® Elite Eight® and Women's Final Four® coach in 1998, Women's Basketball Hall of Fame inductee in 2000, as well as a Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame inductee in 2002. Yow won the inaugural Jimmy V ESPY for Perseverance at the 2007 ESPY Awards. Yow was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987 and is currently battling the disease for the third time.
The Kay Yow/WBCA Fund hits close to the Salisbury University community as Coach Mapp served as an assistant coach under Coach Yow for five seasons at N.C. State.
"For women's basketball and for her I could not think of anyone who embodies the perseverance this cause needs," said Mapp. "It just makes sense to have this fund named after her."
More information about Coaches vs. Cancer, Think Pink, the Kay Yow/WBCA Fund, The V Foundation, WBCA is available from the following resources:
About the American Cancer Society/Coaches vs.
Coaches vs. Cancer, a collaboration between the National Association of Basketball Coaches and the American Cancer Society, exists to leverage the strength, community leadership and celebrity of our country's basketball coaches to raise awareness and in turn, reduce cancer risk through education programs while raising funds for the fight against cancer. Through the efforts of more than 500 basketball coaches and the nation's largest voluntary health organization, more than 12 million dollars has been raised since 1994. For additional information about the American Cancer Society/Coaches vs. Cancer, please visit www.cancer.org.
About Think Pink
The WBCA began "Think Pink" in 2007 as an initiative to raise breast cancer awareness in women's basketball, on campuses and in communities. In 2007, more than 120 schools unified for this effort and helped make the inaugural year of the WBCA's "Think Pink" a success. For additional information about "Think Pink", please visit www.wbca.org/thinkpink.asp.
About the Kay Yow/WBCA Fund
The Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund was announced on December 3, 2007, during the Jimmy V Classic. The Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund, in partnership with The V Foundation for Cancer Research, raises money in the fight against cancer. It was appropriate to announce this Fund during the Jimmy V Classic because of the connection between Jim Valvano, former North Carolina State men's head basketball coach, and Kay Yow, North Carolina State women's basketball coach. For additional information about the Kay Yow/WBCA Fund, please visit www.wbca.org/kayyowwbcacancerfund.asp.
About The V Foundation
The V Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to saving lives by helping to find a cure for cancer. The foundation seeks to make a difference by generating broad-based support for cancer research and by creating an urgent awareness among all Americans of the importance of the war against cancer. The V Foundation performs these dual roles through advocacy, education, fundraising and philanthropy. For additional information about The V Foundation, please visit www.thevfoundation.org.
About the WBCA
Founded in 1981, the WBCA promotes women's basketball by unifying coaches at all levels to develop a reputable identity for the sport and to foster and promote the development of the game as a sport for women and girls. For additional information about the WBCA, please visit www.wbca.org.
About Colleges Against Cancer
Through the American Cancer Society's Colleges Against Cancer (CAC) program, college students are having fun while making a difference in the lives of people facing cancer. The CAC program allows college students, faculty, and staff to work together to bring American Cancer Society programs and services to college communities nationwide. To get involved with Salisbury University's CAC chapter, please visit http://events.cancer.org/rflsurelay