Crusaders and Comets excited to take part in Pink Game

Lucas Punkari/Daily Herald Carlton Crusaders Grade 12 student Syd Hobson looks to make a shot while being guarded by Kate Fransoo of the John Paul II Crusaders during a game at the Kelly Smith Memorial Tournament at St. Mary earlier this month.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at Carlton with tip-off scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

After being part of the St. Mary Marauders “Swish for a Cure” game last January, the Carlton Crusaders are ready to serve as the hosts for this year’s senior girls’ basketball pink game fundraiser.

The Crusaders will welcome the Melfort Comets to town on Thursday for the “Carlton Crushes Cancer” event, which will see all funds raised go towards the Victoria Hospital Foundation.

“It’s a bit surreal to know that it’s finally here after we’ve been fundraising for so long,” Crusaders head coach Kelsey Pearson said. “You think there’s a lot of time when it’s two-and-a-half months away, then all of sudden it’s the week of the game.

“Everyone here is really excited about it, especially the girls’ who got to play at St. Mary last year. As we’ve been figuring out the events that we have planned for this year’s game, they’ve been bringing up some of the things that stood out to them when they took part last January.”

After the volleyball season came to an end for the girls in November, the Crusaders kicked their fundraising drive into high gear with bottle drives, selling “Home is Where the Heart Is” t-shirts and donations from businesses in Prince Albert.

“It’s really been an incredible experience to see how much the community has stepped up,” Pearson said.

“The girls have really learned so much from this and I think they’ve had a chance to see already just how much bigger this is than any other basketball game.”

It will also be an exciting evening for the Comets, who will be hosting their own Pink Game in 2021 against the Meadow Lake Carpenter Spartans.

“Carlton and St. Mary have both done a phenomenal job in Prince Albert over the last two years for the Victoria Hospital Foundation and we’re excited about helping to raise funds here in Melfort next year,” Comets head coach Kelly Linnell said.

“It’s a real privilege and honour to be asked to take part in this game. The girls are really excited and it won’t be like anything they’ve been a part of in high school, especially with all of the events that go along with the game itself.”

Doors will open at Carlton at 5:30 p.m. with the opening tip-off set for 7:30 p.m.

The admission for the contest, which will also include a silent auction, a 50/50 raffle, a Junior NBA game and Ukrainian dancers, is $5.