COLUMBIA — Many women's sports teams have a pink-out game during their season — a game where jerseys and popcorn are pink and the proceeds go to breast cancer research. The Stephens College volleyball team has taken this a step further and turned it into a season-long theme: “Pink Out for the Cure.”
“It’s just something different,” Stars coach Shane McAfee said. “A new twist.”
The Stars received a grant from the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization that will help with the cost of pink outs at all the Stars' home games, including pink jerseys, informative flyers and any other material to help educate people about breast cancer.
“A lot of people might not know everything, even at an all-women’s college, about breast cancer,” senior Megan Sheffield said. “So it’s really nice for our school to get that awareness out there.”
Along with handing out flyers and wearing pink, the team will hold a car wash to benefit breast cancer research, conduct a volleyball clinic for the handicapped and get involved in the Mid-Missouri Race for the Cure, which is a 5K run set for Sept. 18 at the Mizzou Sports Park.
“I’m excited for the camp,” Sheffield said. “It’s a different experience that you don’t always get to experience, so that will be a lot of fun.”
As representatives of an all-women's school, the team thought it is extra important for it to raise awareness and help out the community.
“I know everyone on our team has been affected by breast cancer with a friend or a family member,” senior Kelsey Benson said. “And so it really means a lot to us, and we know it means a lot to the audience.”
Benson and Sheffield will be running in the Race for the Cure for the first time, and they said they know they're going to need to prepare for the race.
“As we’re doing practice, we’re like, 'We gotta train for that.'” Benson said. “We can’t be last!"
The Stars' season-long pink out is providing incentive for the whole team.
“We have to get a lot more than a win this season,” Sheffield said. “We are fighting for breast cancer.”