Rivals come together to raise cancer awareness

Senior Madeline Miller jumps up to spike the ball during the first set of Dig Pink Spike Blue. After playing five games, Johnston fell to Urbandale in extra points with a score of 17-15.

Meredith Gwennap, Staff Writer

The volleyball team is hosting the annual Dig Pink Spike Blue game on Tuesday Oct. 8.

Dig Pink is a nationwide foundation to raise breast cancer awareness. The foundation began donating money to the Sideout Foundation, an organization that helps raise money and awareness for breast cancer research.This year there are 500 college teams, and 1,500 high school and middle school teams participating.

Math teacher and head coach Richard Brooks said,  “I was trying to get the team to understand service and I thought this would be a great opportunity.” This is Johnston’s sixth year of participating in Dig Pink.

Spike Blue was added by Johnston volleyball three years ago to raise money and support for colon cancer. Blue is the awareness color for colon cancer. Assistant coach and health teacher Lacey Fulton was diagnosed with colon cancer four years ago. “I thought it would be a great way to raise awareness for colon cancer as well,” Fulton said.

The volleyball team goes out to different businesses and restaurants to ask for donations. The donations they receive will go to both the Sideout Foundation and the American Cancer Society.

The team also designs a T-shirt, after that the student council is in charge of coordinating the shirts and orders. The T-shirt  is offered to the opposing team to order as well as Johnston students. Individuals can also go to www.side-out.org to make donations.

Senior Melinda Paszkiewicz said she has seen the foundation grow each year she has participated. “The longer you do it, the more attention it receives, and more people get involved,”  Paszkiewicz said. “Each year there is more and more money raised for Dig Pink Spike Blue, there are also more raffle prizes awarded,” Fulton said.

The JV and Varsity teams are both wearing pink uniforms. The varsity team usually wears pink socks, but this year they also tie dyed head bands.

“This is probably our biggest match of the year,” Paszkiewicz said. It is senior night and they are facing Urbandale. “Urbandale is a school rival, but especially for volleyball because we always go back and forth. We are playing for a lot more than another win, we are playing for everyone with cancer.”