||Soccer rivalry continues to raise money for Susan G. Komen For the Cure
RELEASED: October 1, 2009
By Leigh Ivey
DANVILLE, KY—Recently, the men's soccer teams from Centre College and Austin College competed not only on the soccer field but also in a friendly competition to see which team could raise more money for breast cancer research.
Because the head coaches of both teams (Centre's Jeb Burch and Austin’s Mark Hudson) have known the tragedy of losing someone to breast cancer, Burch says, "to use the annual conference match between Centre and Austin College as a platform for a greater cause made sense to us."
The money each team raised during the competition will benefit Susan G. Komen For the Cure.
The worldwide leader of the breast cancer movement, this network of cancer survivors and activists strives to save lives, fund scientific research, empower those who are battling cancer and ensure quality care for all.
The idea for an annual "Komen Game" between Centre and Austin was formed in 2007. That summer, Hudson, who had served as Centre's assistant coach for five years, was named head coach at Austin.
Summer 2007 was also when Burch and Hudson were touched by the losses of two women to breast cancer.
At almost the same time that one of Hudson's family friends passed away from the ailment, the mother of a Centre soccer player, Robby Crump '08, also lost her fight to breast cancer.
In light of these events, the coaches agreed that their regularly scheduled conference match should have a twist. And the idea for the annual Susan G. Komen challenge was born.
In the first Komen Game, held in October 2007, Crump—who had yet to score a goal in his collegiate soccer career—hit the game-winning goal in overtime.
That winning goal turned out to be the only goal Crump scored in his Centre career.
"As a program, we were very involved and moved by Robby’s senior year and what playing the inaugural Komen Game meant to him," Burch says. "Robby's story is very moving and reminds everyone how real breast cancer is and how it impacts so many people’s lives. We saw that first-hand, and it's something that will always be a part of us."
In 2007, the teams raised $5,700 for the Komen Foundation. A year later, they raised $5,200.
This year, the teams were able to raise $7,757.
Although in the past the donations came directly from solicitations by the players, the Colonels took a new approach to fundraising this fall. They were not only more active in spreading the word about their cause but also sold T-shirts to raise additional money for the Foundation.
The Komen Game III was held on Friday, Oct. 22 on Centre’s campus. As is tradition, the members of both teams met midfield before play began to announce the outcome of the friendly fundraising competition.
This year, the Colonels not only raised more money than the Austin College Kangaroos but also defeated Austin 3-1 on the soccer field.
And although thir victory on the field is important to the Colonels, Burch says, "our main expectation was to raise awareness in the fight against breast cancer."
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Consumers Digest ranks Centre No. 1 in educational value among all U.S. liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
For news archives go to http://www.centre.edu/web/news/newsarchive.html.
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