DOBSON — Surry Central defeated Mount Airy 15-0 in the annual “Pink in the Park” cancer benefit exhibition game on Tuesday.
Mount Airy, whose roster has been depleted lately by injuries and team member departures, had only six players but chose to continue with the event with the loan of three Lady Eagles because of the importance of the cause.
“I just want to thank Coach Olivia Beroth and Assistant Coach Donald Price for showing such good sportsmanship and helping us to make this happen,” said Central Coach Glenn Craddock. “They could have said no on participating. My hat’s off to them for being such good sports.” Craddock also recognized Pink in the Park sponsor Rodney Darnell of Surry Drug for his support.
Craddock explained that the event is staged to raise awareness and all proceeds raised go to the American Cancer Society. Mary Craddock also was recognized for organizing the event.
“We need to recognize the cancer survivors,” said Craddock. “They are in a battle every day. They need encouragement, hope and all the faith we can give them.”
A total of 12 commemorative ribbons were hung on the backstop, each ribbon a different color to represent a different type of cancer. A group of cancer survivors were recognized before the start of the game. Brenda Schwartz, a breast cancer survivor of two years, was escorted by her daughter, Brianna Schwartz. Elizabeth Fulton was recognized as a six-year survivor of breast cancer. Aquailla Mae Fulton was recognized as a three-year breast cancer survivor. Both Fultons were escorted by their niece, Calle Fulton.
Flake Mason was represented by Holly Mason. He is a prostrate cancer survivor. Samantha Cox represented Jackie March. March is a breast cancer survivor. Meagan Hutson represented Donna Hall, breast cancer survivor. Brittany Lewis represented Gene Everette, a prostrate cancer survivor. Kendall Harold represented Brelan Beltcher, who also threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Beltcher is a one-year cancer survivor.
Ashley Craddock represented Howard Cummings, colon cancer survivor, and Karmen Gardner escorted Todd Gardner. Todd is a one-year survivor of prostrate cancer.
Central’s offense started out relaxed in the first inning.
“We really came out swinging the bats,” said Craddock. “We were not uptight. We came out and literally hit the first pitch.”
Eagle Cassidy Joyner had a grand slam in the game. Craddock reports that Joyner’s shot sailed over the press box and landed in the football field stands. Teammate Brittany Myers also hit a towering home run and Elise Austin also homered. Austin pitched two innings for Central and Joyner pitched the last two innings.
“All the girls hit great,” said Craddock. “The game was an opportunity for us to get some girls more playing time. We just had fun and that makes a big difference.”
The Lady Eagles varsity is scheduled to host Starmount at 5 p.m. today. Seniors will be honored at this game. Central is slated to play at East Surry on Friday at 4:30 p.m
Reach David Broyles at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1952.