Volleyball, football teams raise money for breast cancer research

Eastern Michigan wore pink jerseys and played with a pink volleyball on Saturday.

Saturday marked the third consecutive year Eastern Michigan University paired up with the Side-Out Foundation for “Dig Pink,” an event that has helped raise awareness and money for breast cancer research.

Along with a volleyball game against Buffalo, the football team was involved for the first time, too, with its “Kick Pink” game against Ball State. Both events were on campus, and the fundraiser served as a reminder that breast cancer is very real and could affect anyone.

“Everyone in sports wants to talk about statistics,” EMU volleyball coach Kim Berrington said. “Here’s a statistic: One in 10 women are diagnosed with breast cancer, which means if you look around the locker room, that’s someone you know.”

Berrington said it seems there is always someone close to the team fighting the disease. A grandmother of one of her players was honored before the game because of her fight with breast cancer.

Side-Out – a Virginia-based non-profit that raises money in cooperation with volleyball-related organizations – raised more than $500,000 for the cause last year. EMU donated more than $5,000 toward that total with its silent auctions and from donors.

The university’s goal was to raise $8,000 this year. Sports Information Director Jim Streeter said the exact amount wouldn’t be available until Monday.

During the contests, the volleyball team wore pink jerseys and used a pink ball and football coach Ron English wore a pink hat. EMU lost the volleyball match 3-1 and the football game 29-27.

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