Lady Highlanders fight breast cancer on and off court

As the Lady Highlanders took the court Friday night, the color pink dominated the surroundings. Fans were adorned with pink apparel, ranging from t-shirts to socks.

This Pink Game marked the third year in a row that the Howell girls basketball program has held the fundraiser supporting breast cancer awareness.

During the game, they raffled off a Kindle Fire, an iPod, Red Wings tickets, and miscellaneous gift cards.

There was also a bake sale being run by the younger girls travel basketball teams. They were selling cupcakes and a variety of other sweets.

To top it all off, the Howell cheerleaders were throwing pink t-shirts into the stands for lucky fans to grab.

The event proved to be very successful again, with the team raising just under $2000 for the Susan G. Komen Mid-Michigan affiliate.

Preparing for the event required much time and effort.

“Dianne Samples and I have been putting pieces together for a little over two months. The final week is the most stressful putting all the final pieces together but it all came together,” Howell coach Tricia Clark said.

While the event had an excellent turnout, the game itself didn’t live up to expectations.

The Lady Highlanders faced a tough Brighton team who only had three losses coming into the contest.

From tip-off to the final buzzer in the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs dominated the match up. They took an early 15-6 lead at the end of the first quarter and never relinquished it.

At halftime Brighton was up 30-19, a manageable deficit for the Lady Highlanders. However, turnovers and poor ball handling plagued Howell throughout the entire game.

Howell junior forward Andrea Render led all scorers with an impressive 23 points. It was still not enough as the Lady Highlanders fell 56-37 to Brighton.

Clark was pleased with her team’s effort despite the tough loss to their rival.

“Obviously the game itself did not turn out the way I would like the outcome to be. I thought the Howell girls put on a good fight against a more experienced Brighton team.”

Even though the game didn’t go as planned, Clark remains upbeat about her team’s outlook for the rest of the season.

“I believe every game, win or lose, will help my team in the long run. They are learning and improving every day and are peaking at the right time going into the state tournament.”

Putting on the annual Pink Game continues to be a tremendous honor for the Howell girls basketball program.

“To me it means the world to work for something that will benefit someone else. I am happy that I can help and make a difference. The team gets so excited for this event and they have a great grasp on how important this event is and want to have a great event and fight for those that have to fight for their lives to survive against breast cancer,” Clark said.

Senior captain Kayla Johnson was thankful for all the people who came to the event.

“The community did a great job coming to support us again. We made a lot of money, so the game went well for us.”

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