Ardens hoping to duplicate incredible success of Pink Game

Southwest Booster file photo by Steven Mah

The Swift Current Comp. Senior Ardens basketball team is once again raising funds for a local family affected by cancer. The fundraising effort will culminate on Feb. 27 when they host the Campbell Tartans in a ‘Pink Game.’

“We are raising money for a local family that has been going through cancer treatments. The mom is the one who has been going through that and she is over her cancer now, but going through the follow up to that,” explained Ardens’ grade 12 co-captain Danika Messer.

The Ardens have been busy raising money for Stacy Smith and her family.

“We started this week and we did a hat day. On Valentines Day we do serenades and we sing and we raised a lot of money doing that,” said co-captain Madison Mortensen, who added that the Ardens were also visiting local businesses to raise money as well as bake sales, hot chocolate sales, and another hat day. “We are getting a lot of support from the community, getting lots of donations and raffle prizes.”

The Ardens last hosted a Pink Game two years ago when they raised over $13,000 for the family of the late Rena Best.

“It was really fun to play in front of a big crowd and just to see kind of the whole city come out and support us. There was lots of donations and it just felt like a whole community thing rather than just our school. I was really proud of our team. We played a really good game, but mostly just because we raised that amount of money. We didn’t think we’d raise that much, but we ended up, I think the first Pink Game they raised about $3,000 and then we got over $13,000, so we weren’t expecting that at all. It was crazy,” said Messer.

The Ardens will also ask for support from the local middle schools as well, which bolstered their total last time around. The visiting Campbell Tartans have also been raising money in Regina to supplement the Ardens’ efforts.

The 2017 Pink Game was played in front of a massive crowd at the Swift Current Comp. when the Ardens lost 57-56 to the North Battleford Comp. Vikings.

“It’s probably the most exciting game that I’ve ever played in,” said Mortensen. “I know last time we did it it was hard to plan because we hadn’t done it in a while. It was really stressful for all of us. But as soon as you saw the look on the family’s faces it all was worth it, everything was worth it. You just feed off all the energy playing for something, so it’s even easier to play for.”

The Tartans are currently third in the Regina Tier I Girl’s Basketball League with a 6-5 record.

“We haven’t played them, we’ve watched them. I think we will have the right motivation to be able to play our best. As long as we try our best, we’ve been practicing really good the past few weeks, so I think we should be able to play really well against them,” said Mortensen.

The game will tip off at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults and $2 for students.