Crushing Cancer

Crushing Cancer

Latrobe Varsity Basketball

The boys basketball team has done many tip-off season events in the past. This year they are doing something very unique. They are teaming up with the Courtney Howard Reed Memorial Committee to bring the community together in support of the Boys Basketball program and a local effort to celebrate the life of Courtney Howard Reed, a 1985 graduate from Latrobe who was taken from cancer.

Along with the Reed committee, all proceeds are being split with the V foundation also.

The V foundation is a charity that was formed by ESPN and Jim Valvano in 1993 through his ESPY speech after being diagnosed with cancer recently before the event. His goal for the foundation was to raise money for search of a cure for cancer.

Valvano battled his cancer for several weeks before losing his battle only eight weeks after his speech. But he did have a message for all looking for a cure, “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up”. Latrobe certainly is not giving up.

The event will take place Saturday, November 15 from 6:30-8:30 in the Main Gym.

There will be music, a live announcer, concessions, a Chinese Auction, 50/50 ticket, and a lottery ticket.

Mrs. Butler, is organizing the collection of baskets from clubs and departments throughout the district, says there are going to close to 30 baskets. She is also responsible for the presales on all items at the event.

A concession stand will be open during the event, with all donations going to the foundation as well.

A program will be put together together also. Some of the program will include each player and their pledge.

Matt Cullen, a member of the Varsity Basketball team, says, “Everyone will shoot 100 shots, and we have to go out and get people to sponsors. We can get straight donations or a pledge per shot.” For example, if a pledge is made for a dollar and the player makes 80 free throws, the person who made the pledge owes the player 80 dollars.

The participants will include all players who are trying out for basketball team, both junior varsity and varsity, and willing players from 7th, 8th, and 9th grades. Junior Pro (grades 2nd-8th grade), student assistants and managers are also able to participate. Key and Interact Clubs will both have two participants. Courtney Reed’s friends will be shooting, along with Mr. Mears, Mr. LoCascio, Mr. Ingel, and Mr. Shivetts.

Coach Wetzel wanted to expand the participants to try and include more people and try to get the public more involved, and it is very apparent. This event is open to everyone. Not just those in the basketball community. All is welcomed.

Wetzel really thought to get after it this year and see if we could do something good on a national level as well as a local level.

”I think one big difference is that the fact we’re trying to incorporate the community in the event. Trying to get the community come out to meet and see players who will be trying out for the team. Introduce them,” says Wetzel.

The goal is limitless. Wetzel just wanted to make it big. He wants a roof put on the pavillion out near the tennis courts in the new complex, in honor of Courtney Reed, whose spirit lives on.