COLCHESTER, Vt. - The Saint Michael's College men's and women's basketball teams are slated to host their annual Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers and Go4theGoal Lace Up 4 Pediatric Cancer games on Saturday, which the Purple Knights will dedicate to the memory of alumna Amy Pitchers '08, who passed away on Dec. 31 at age 33.
The basketball teams host the University of New Haven on Saturday in the Ross Sports Center, with the women tipping off at 1:30 p.m. and the men at 3:30 p.m. While looking to increase cancer awareness and promote healthy living, basketball coaching staffs will wear sneakers with their familiar game attire in conjunction with the Jan. 20-26 Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers Week. Student-athletes will also wear gold shoelaces as part of a Lace Up 4 Pediatric Cancer event, raising awareness about Go4theGoal, which supports children with cancer.
As part of the day, the Purple Knights will honor the late Pitchers by accepting donations for the Beth Donovan Hospice in Kemptville, Ontario. The first Canadian women's basketball player in College history, Pitchers died on New Year's Eve after a battle with stage 4 liver and colon cancer. A captain as a senior in 2007-08, Pitchers blocked 109 career shots - still good for sixth in program history - in 102 games while earning a degree in history. Following graduation, she returned to the Ottawa area and later joined the Ontario Provincial Police. Just last year, Pitchers was inducted into the Kemptville & District Sports Hall of Fame.
The Coaches vs. Cancer program is a nationwide collaboration between the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). The program seeks to increase cancer awareness and promote healthy living among students, faculty and staff, fans, and the community at large. Participating coaches have helped raise more than $100 million since 1993 to help the ACS save lives by helping people stay well and get well, by finding cures, and by fighting back against cancer. Suits and Sneakers is a national Coaches vs. Cancer event and, according to the NABC, by wearing sneakers, participating coaches help raise awareness about cancer and the importance that nutrition and physical activity play in reducing one's risk of the disease. For more information about Coaches vs. Cancer, visit here, or to donate directly to the ACS, visit cancer.org.
Go4theGoal, which was founded in 2006, aims to improve the lives of children battling cancer by providing financial support, developing and implementing unique hospital programs, funding innovative research, and granting personal wishes. Go4theGoal provides the best practices to patients, their families, and the hospitals and staff that care for them. For more information, visit go4thegoal.org.