Knight Times

The Student News Site of Arizona College Prep

Knight Times

Knight Times

Dig Pink: Supporting Cancer Treatment through Volleyball


Sporting events are known for bringing communities together, but hardly any games at ACP can compare to the amount of support that the Dig Pink Volleyball games get. They exist because of the Side-Out Foundation, which is a breast cancer charity that was founded back in 2006 that funds for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer. The majority of their advocacy is demonstrated through their efforts in volleyball, such as working with schools to help plan out Dig Pink events across the country.

I recently received the wonderful opportunity to interview our Girls’ Varsity Volleyball coach, Mr. Shannon. As one of the many coaches at ACP, he has been coaching for about ten years. Mr. Shannon explains, “I have coached 7th¬†and 8th grade volleyball, then moved on to coaching the freshman boys and girls’ teams at Perry High School, and I have been coaching the varsity team and running the volleyball program here at ACP for the last three years.” Although he is a volleyball coach now, he didn’t actually play the sport growing up. When began teaching, he coached girl’s lacrosse in New York, but moved to Arizona and slowly became more distance from the sport. “When I met my partner, I learned a lot about the game because she came from a volleyball family. She was also raising two daughters that played volleyball. The more I watched and the more I learned about the game, I became hooked. It is an amazing game where things change in an instant, and the important part of the game is one’s ability to read and react to what’s going on.”

As a coach, Mr. Shannon believes that listening and developing a relationship with his players are most important. As he explains, “I feel like the two go hand-in-hand, and doing both helps a coach understand what their athletes’ goals and purposes are.” He is very proud of all of the members on his team, their success, and how much his players are growing with the sport. He greatly enjoys seeing players interact with each other no matter their level. Mr. Shannon was enthusiastic about the Dig Pink game because he believed that hosting games like Dig Pink allows others outside of the volleyball team or program to see how the team is there for each other and supports one another. He adds that “cancers including breast cancer are a serious matter that I hope will be more controllable one day. We feel that it’s a great opportunity for us to bring awareness and show our support.”

This is the positive attitude that the Side-Out Foundation hopes to spread through their events such as Dig Pink. We are very proud of all of the volleyball players that help make events like these possible and the support for our enthusiastic students. Go Knights!

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