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Women's hockey raises thousands for charity

Campus Correspondent

Published: Sunday, February 3, 2013

Updated: Friday, August 23, 2013 17:08

UConn women’s hockey might not have received the results they would have wanted on the scoreboard, losing to Providence in back-to-back games, but this weekend was less about the scores and more about making a difference.

Friday night’s Skating Strides game was a part of the Huskies continuous efforts to raise money for the Friends of Mel Foundation, a foundation started in the memory of Mel Simmons who passed away due to breast cancer nearly five years ago. UConn wore pink uniforms to spread breast cancer awareness and also sold game worn pink jerseys to raise money for the cause of the foundation.

“We should always know that we need to give back and I think it’s a great charity,” said head coach Heather Linstad. “Also I think that it helps take shy kids and improve their confidence and what they should be trying to establish in life. So, Skating Strides to me is a life skills thing and hopefully they take with it what it is”.

Along with jersey sales, the Huskies held their second annual clinic for 130 lucky kids that allowed them to have two ice sessions on the Freitas Forum and run around on the turf of the Shenkman Training Center.

Members of the team also “Stormed the Dorms” in an effort to raise money for the foundation, in which they went door to door in UConn’s many residence halls. Coach Linstad feels that this is a very important opportunity, especially for her younger players.

“It’s no different than the way I coach,” said Linstad. “I’m trying to help these kids get more out of what they think they can do”.

The UConn Women’s Hockey team was able to raise $15,000 prior to the Skating Strides game, which they presented to the Friends of Mel Foundation prior to Friday night’s game. UConn has led the Hockey East in donations the past seven years with over $50,000 in donations prior to Friday’s game.

“We started off not really knowing what we were doing and we still led the league,” said coach Linstad. “I’ve tried to keep implementing different opportunities for the girls to raise the money, get them out in the community, and continue to give back. Who know what will happen next year”.

If you would like to learn more about the Friends of Mel Foundation or would like to make a donation more information can be found at www.FriendsOfMel.org .

The UConn Huskies will be back in action next Saturday against the Northeastern Huskies at 1 p.m. at the Mark Edward Freitas Forum. 

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