Twenty-four schools, making up around 30% of Minnesota’s high school lacrosse scene, will be joining forces to compete in a weekend of action all in the name of raising awareness and fighting blood cancers.
Throughout the spring of 2014, around the country boys and girls high school lacrosse teams are teaming up with the HEADstrong Foundation to compete against rival opponents. These games are taking place in part with the HEADstrong’s National Rivalry Series.
These Minnesota high schools are coming together as one for the 1st Annual Minnesota Burn Cancer Games. The event is held as a fund and awareness raiser for the fight against blood cancers. The series begins on April 23rd and will run through May 20th.
Two friends’ and rival coaches, Pat Donaghy, (Cretin-Derham Hall) and Frank Clark, (The Blake School), came up with the idea for the Minnesota Burn Cancer Games as they believe in the importance of brining heightened awareness to the cause and strive for further meaning to their seasons.
In the fall, a few football programs in Minnesota host a ‘Beat Cancer’ game in which the schools raise funds and awareness for different cancer organizations. I knew I wanted to do something similar for lacrosse, so Frank Clark and I came up with the idea that our schools, both boys and girls, can compete in an event and we would wear HF awareness apparel. The girls teams agreed upon the event as well and we will be playing April 26th. From that, we invited other schools to participate and the response from the community has been incredible.” – Pat Donaghy, MN Burn Cancer Games Organizer.
In addition to spearheading the MN Burn Cancer Games, Donaghy also leads the HEADstrong Lacrosse Club of Minnesota, a team that is spreading blood cancer awareness across the country.
Over 700 athletes are expected to compete while raising funds and promoting blood cancer awareness all while wearing HEADstrong’s signature crew socks.
Annual Minnesota Burn Cancer Games Schedule
Tartan vs North St. Paul, April 23rd
Eden Prairie vs Minnetonka, April 24th
Cretin-Derham Hall vs Blake (Boys and Girls), April 26th
Woodbury vs East Ridge, April 28th
Jefferson vs Eagan, April 29th
Rosemount vs Prior Lake, May 1
Providence vs Monticello, May 1st
Maple Grove vs Osseo Park Center, May 2nd
Chaska vs Chanhassen, May 8th
Delano vs Orono, May 15
Lakeville North vs Lakeville South, May 20
On behalf of the HEADstrong Foundation, the Colleluori family and those affected by blood cancers we wish to extend our sincere appreciation and gratitude to the Minnesota high school lacrosse community who have united to take part in the 1st Annual Minnesota Burn Cancer Games. We are very humbled and so pleased see over 30% of the high school programs participating and over 700 athletes supporting our cause through these games.
As a non-profit organization on the front lines of the disease we are committed to assuring cancer patients that they are not alone in their fight and we could not think of a more appropriate and inspiring statement than 24 schools taking the field to say to those in the fight, ‘Minnesota has your back!’ To the players, coaches, officials, families, spectators and organizers we applaud your relentlessness and welcome you all to the HEADstrong family.” - Cheryl Colleluori, HF President and Nick’s Mom