Schreiber girls tennis team hosts breast cancer awareness event
After reaching the playoffs and bowing out to Manhasset in the quarterfinals, the Schreiber girls varsity tennis team put together an event in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.In their second season under Head Coach Shane Helfner, they arranged their Play with the Teachers Doubles Tournament at the school courts.
This is the second season the team put together this event. In fact, Helfner was responsible for creating the event six years ago while coaching in Commack. His idea was simple: get everyone in the community involved while supporting a wonderful cause. Every member of the varsity squad had the task of asking a teacher in the district to pair up with them to form a doubles team for this tournament.
“I realized how much students love seeing their teachers outside of the classroom and I wanted to think of a way we could incorporate the school, tennis program and community for a great cause,” said Helfner. “It’s fun to see a teacher outside their element.”
Fun was the best way to describe the day. Whether a staff member was experienced at tennis or not, it was a terrific day for the girls to participate with their favorite teacher in a friendly doubles competition. It was also great to see the teachers take time out of their day to compete against one another in this two-hour event. Everyone who participated played with pink tennis balls.
The top four finishers were awarded trophies, while every participant earned a medal for playing. It was a win-win for the girls and teachers who took to the courts.
The parents also chipped in by asking the community for donations. There were 17 baskets of prizes at the team table. People had a chance to win prizes including Italian food, gift cards and Halloween-themed items.
There were even some specially made cards designed by junior varsity player Sophie Lampl.
The team raised more than $600. The money that was collected will go to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. The Susan G. Komen Foundation is a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to saving lives and putting an end to breast cancer once and for all.
Coach Helfner is hoping this event can inspire other teams to conduct similar events. He has seen his students go to college and start their own events to raise money for different causes.
“There’s nothing better than having a student who has gone off [to college] realizing they can make a difference,” said Helfner.