Dig this special event

If you’re free this Saturday afternoon (Oct. 6), or if you can manage to spare a couple of hours in your busy schedule, there’s a perfect opportunity to catch some prep volleyball and participate in a fundraising event all in one place.

Christopher High is hosting the Dig Pink Tournament in support of The Side-Out Foundation and breast cancer awareness month.

Doors to the CHS gymnasium open at 3:30 p.m. and the first match begins at 5 p.m. It is free to attend, but donations will be accepted at the door. Checks can be made out to The Side-Out Foundation.

Aside from what is sure to be inspired action on the court, community-minded and driven individuals are eagerly awaiting the chance to do his or her part to raise awareness and give back to a cause that resonates deeply with so many.

CHS and GHS, which is assisting in some of the prize collection for the silent auction and raffle that will also be held, will wear specially designed T-shirts. Baked goods for a special bake sale are being contributed from both schools as well. And many players are dedicating the day to Dina Lopez, the mother of Gilroy High junior Alyssa Lopez and Christopher High senior Shawn Lopez. Dina lost her battle with breast cancer last month. Classmates, friends and faculty, and really, most of Gilroy, have all rallied around the Lopez family.

Saturday is another opportunity to reach out to those who have lost loved ones and encourage others, who are fighting the disease day in and day out.

“We are going to try to turn the entire gym pink,” CHS head coach Brian Calimpong said. “We saw this as an opportunity for the Gilroy girls and Christopher girls to do something within the community and to raise money and awareness for the cause. Hopefully it will be a great event.”

The Side-Out Foundation is a national nonprofit organization that raises money to fight breast cancer. Schools host Dig Pink Tournaments across the United States. This isn’t just another ordinary tournament. It’s extraordinary, based solely on the meaning and purpose behind it. There’s no doubt that what goes on inside the lines will be more motivated by what is being fought for outside the gym by women all over the world than a win in the record books.

“Obviously, we love to play volleyball, and we want to play well,” Calimpong said. “But we want to be good citizens and community members as well, and that’s what this is about.”

It’s a respectable tribute by everyone involved, from the players to the coaches and to the volunteers from all four schools.

“Everyone has been on board and very supportive. We have had people really take charge,” Calimpong added.

Just a quick sidebar, most of the local high school athletes have been donning pink, in one way or another, on his or her uniforms. That will continue throughout October.

Tournament play will consist of two matches. In the first match, Gilroy High will take on Sobrato High. In the second, the Cougars will face Branham High School.

If you’d like to make a donation prior to the event, CHS is registered at the Dig Pink website, www.side-out.org.

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