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Fighting breast cancer at Concordia

by Alexander Cole January 24, 2017
Fighting breast cancer at Concordia

The Stingers participated in the 10th Shoot for the Cure campaign this past weekend

This year, the Shoot for the Cure drive celebrated its 10th anniversary, and all 47 U SPORTS women’s basketball teams participated in the event. Included among those 47 teams was the Concordia Stingers, who decided to make both their basketball and hockey teams a part of the event.

The Stingers incorporated Shoot for the Cure into their rivalry weekend. On Jan. 19, both the men’s and women’s basketball teams took on McGill, while the men’s hockey team played McGill on Jan. 20 and the women’s hockey team played McGill on Jan. 21.

The initiative was created in 2007 by University of New Brunswick women’s basketball head coach Jeff Speedy and, over the last 10 years, the campaign has raised over $1 million in donations, according to The Lance. The campaign is essentially a weekend where all of the teams in U SPORTS raise money for breast cancer research.

“These kinds of events tie together something that touches everyone on an emotional level, and we all want to be part of each other’s athletic lives,” said Swarm president Antoine Marchand. “We’re humbled by all of the efforts that have been made.”

Throughout the weekend, the Stingers sold baked goods at all of their games and had a kiosk set up where fans could buy memorabilia, with all of the proceeds going to breast cancer-related charities.

In addition to Shoot for the Cure, the Stingers have lent a hand to other initiatives this year, including Bell Let’s Talk Day which is happening on Jan. 25. For Marchand, helping out in the community is a large part of the Stingers identity.

“Helping out represents who we are,” Marchand said. “When you do things like this and try to help the community out as much as you can, it shows the core values behind how we carry ourselves and how we want to just generally make a difference.”

Over the last 10 years, the Shoot for the Cure campaign has helped raise over $1 million.

One of the big contributors of the weekend was the women’s hockey team, who, according to captain Tracy-Ann Lavigne, baked 200 cookies to sell at the games. The team also made bracelets and ribbons out pink skate laces to auction off.

The Ed Meagher Arena was decorated in pink as well, and players from all the teams wore pink jerseys and T-shirts during their warm-ups.

According to Lavigne, being a part of the Shoot for the Cure initiative was important for everyone on the team.

“We all did our part for it,” she said. “It’s important because one in nine women get breast cancer, and being part of a women’s sport here it could happen to us also so it’s good to raise money for it.”

Julie Chu, who is the head coach of the women’s hockey team, said Shoot for the Cure is a great way for the Stingers to reach out to the community. Chu said breast cancer is something that affects almost everyone, and has also had close family members go through hardships with the disease.

“In my family, we’ve had a bunch of cancer survivors as well as my grandma who passed away from cancer,” Chu said. “It’s definitely touched my life in a lot of ways, and it’s one of those things where we can’t take it for granted. Anything we can do to get more research to combat cancer is something we as a team want to be a part of.”

The women’s hockey game against the McGill Martlets was the last game for the Shoot for the Cure weekend which saw the Stingers beat the Martlets 3-1.

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