MLC Baseball and Softball Teams Raise Money for Breast Cancer Awareness
NEW ULM, Minn. – Two students involved in spring sports at Martin Luther College were able to find a way to make a difference, raising money for breast cancer awareness in a promotion titled “For the Love of the Game.”
The MLC softball team wearing their "For the Love of the Game" t-shirts in a double header against Northwestern on April 21
Samantha Barber, the manager of the baseball team, came up with the idea after seeing the impact the volleyball team has had with its Dig Pink events the last several years. She especially took note this volleyball season, when volleyball coach Rebecca Cox (whose husband, Randy, is the head baseball coach for MLC) was diagnosed with breast cancer. Barber wanted not only to raise money for the cause, but also to show support for the Cox family.
“I am not a big part of volleyball and didn’t have much to do with the Dig Pink event,” Barber said. “I wanted to be able to not only show support for Mrs. Cox, but also Coach (Randy) Cox and the boys because I know that cancer affects the family as well.”
Barber told the idea to softball pitcher Laura Miller, who has personal experience with the disease in her family, and wanted to get the softball team involved as well.
“This project meant a lot to me because I have a strong family history of breast cancer,” Miller said. “My mom, who is a breast cancer survivor, was able to fly out for the games that day.”
Miller designed a logo for the event (scheduled for April 21 when both the baseball and softball teams had home double headers) that was placed on pink t-shirts, which were sold to students in the weeks leading up to the weekend. The softball team hoped to use those T-shirts, with their numbers and names on the back, as their jerseys for Saturday’s double header against Northwestern.
Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate. The baseball double header scheduled for Saturday was postponed due to rain, while the softball double header against Northwestern was played in the rain and cold.
The teams still showed their support for the event, with the softball team wearing the pink shirts as their uniforms in the rain against the Eagles, while the baseball team used pink tape on their cleats as a show of support when they played their double header the following Monday.
The baseball team also had Coach Rebecca Cox throw out the first pitch prior to the Crown double header to help raise awareness at the game for the event.
In total, “For the Love of the Game” raised $250 for the American Breast Cancer Society, with donations coming from the T-shirt sales as well as the sale of sunflower seeds and water at the games. A donation box was also placed at both events for fans to give money to the cause.
While the fundraising effort proved to be a lot of work, the two women in charge were pleased with the outcome, and they hope to do it again.
“It was a big undertaking for the two of us to try, especially since it was our first fundraiser,” Miller said, “but the campus family really supported us and helped out whenever and wherever they could. It was a great success, and I hope to be able to do the event again next spring.”