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The student news site of New Trier High School

New Trier News

Cancer awareness game goes beyond basketball

Victory over OPRF was secondary in comparison to the overall meaning of the night
Krista Meyers
The boys and girls basketball teams pose before their annual cancer awareness game

Oftentimes, basketball games can be adequately summarized with a quick look at a stat sheet and knowledge of a final score. All people typically need to know is who won, who performed well, and who did not. 

The New Trier girls basketball game against Oak Park and River Forest High (OPRF) School on January 16, however, cannot be encapsulated by mere statistics or numbers. This game meant so much more to the players, coaches, and fans, than any other Tuesday night game that has been played so far this year. 

It’s really special to see people rally behind a cause that’s near and dear to our hearts.

— Kate Sacarro

This is not because of the resounding victory that was achieved by the Trevians via a score of 60-18. This is not because Sela Klein poured in 19 points to go along with three steals, or because Kate Sacarro chipped in six assists and six steals of her own. And it certainly is not because OPRF is a formidable opponent — after all, they currently hold a record of 4-17. 

Rather, it was the sentimental value of this game that charged it with a particularly special meaning. The contest on January 16 was the annual cancer awareness game, dedicated to former Trevian basketball player Maisa Assata. The proceeds of the game went to Cal’s Angels, an organization dedicated to “granting wishes, raising awareness, and funding research” for the fight against pediatric cancer. 

Senior captain KJ Sacarro was honored by the turnout and enthusiasm that the crowd displayed.

“It’s really special to see people rally behind a cause that’s near and dear to our hearts,” Sacarro said. “Before we played, looking out into the crowd and seeing everyone…was really awesome.”

In order to raise money for their cause, the team designed, bought, and sold t-shirts to the New Trier community. On the eve of the game, nearly everyone in the crowd was donning one of them, creating not only a great visual scene, but also an aura of community and solidarity that made it a special scene to behold. 

And the dominant performance executed by the Trevians capped off what was otherwise a perfect night. 

It is rare that basketball games can transcend their material implications. Almost always, there is an air of stress regarding the need to win, or the impact that losing will have on playoff seeding. However, this game demonstrated that it is possible to rise above the competition, and rally around a cause instead of a victory. 

To senior Marley Meyers, this was obvious:

“It was one of those things that is bigger than basketball.”

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