Lasers come together to raise awareness

By James Payne – 1851 Staff

Family, Friends and Alumni Weekend is one of the busiest and most popular weekends on campus and a major slate of games for several sports teams. This year field hockey and both men’s and women’s soccer celebrated Senior Day on October 15. Women’s volleyball hosted a tri-match with Emmanuel College and Framingham State. While honoring the seniors in their final seasons, teams also did their fair share of raising awareness for breast cancer during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Junior forward Haleigh Butler (Center) and teammates honor Coach Vito LaFrancesca’s mother who died of breast cancer by wearing pink during the month of October. Photo by Jackie Colombie

Women’s volleyball, along with the men’s and women’s soccer teams, has been active throughout October in raising awareness for the widespread disease. When asked about the teams raising awareness, Lasell’s Sports Information Director Emily Machado said, “It makes me feel proud that our teams can pull away from their sporting goals to raise awareness and honor a cause that is far greater than athletics.”

The idea of raising awareness and donations to breast cancer touches closest to home with the women’s soccer team. Several years ago Head Coach Vito LaFrancesca lost his mother to breast cancer. His team has worn pink jerseys all month and LaFrancesca himself proudly sports a bright pink polo shirt on the sidelines. The team also collected donations to raise money for Kick for Dana-Farber. Dana-Farber, a cancer institute, is where LaFrancesca works when he’s not on the sideline of Taylor Field.

The starting goalkeeper on the women’s team, junior Sarah LaClair is a cancer survivor herself. On Saturday October 22, the Lasers traveled to St. Joseph’s (ME) where the Monks honored LaClair with a thyroid cancer flower, according to Machado. The Monks will also take half of the money raised at halftime from the game and give it to the Lasers to add to their Kick for Dana-Farber collection.

Throughout October, women’s volleyball has been wearing pink t-shirts during their warm-ups, had a Dig Pink night and some of the officials have joined in on the awareness by using pink whistles. Also, with the help of the parents of the women on the team, at each game there has been a bake sale to raise funds to donate to breast cancer foundations.

The men’s soccer team pitched in by wearing pink socks at the games in October. The men took donations to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

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