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GREENSBORO - The North Carolina A&T women's basketball team woke up early Saturday morning on Oct. 6 geared up to win. But victory had nothing to do with basketball. The ladies were looking to win in the battle against breast cancer. 

Dressed in breast cancer awareness shirts, the team was united and ready to support the runners of the 20th Anniversary Women's Only 5K Walk & Run at Cone Health Women's Hospital. There was also a Girls' Only Mini-Run.

"We're here to cheer on the younger girls in their mini race, and for the women running in the big race who need that extra boost to finish", said junior DeAndra Davis.  

To support National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October was a unanimous decision as a community service outreach project for the Aggies. The runners and walkers brought in $118,711 for the mammography scholarship fund.

The fund provides free, life-saving mammograms and follow-up care for women who are uninsured, do not qualify for Medicare or Medicaid and or lack the financial means to pay for the screening. The Lady Aggies cheered on an astounding 3, 500 registered runners in the Women's Only 5k Race.

 "This has been something that has affected some of our athletes on the team, so they were eager to get out and volunteer for the Women's Only Race", said assistant coach Shavon Earp.

Seniors Nikia Gorham and JaQuayla Berry were among the Aggies who said they have had family members who have suffered from the disease. While some of the ladies have experienced the strife of the illness through loved ones, the others who had not were still there and avid in their efforts to support the women walking and running.

The team made posters decorated with the famous pink ribbon and other pastel colors representative of breast cancer awareness. The signs were designed to motivate the runners trying to finish the 3.1 mile race.   

The most important part about A&T women's basketball team volunteering was being there. Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women. Every woman age 40 and older is encouraged to have a mammogram. Mammograms are covered by most insurance, including Medicare and Medicaid. But not everyone is eligible for those programs, which is part of the reason why women's basketball supported the race.

 Head coach Tarrell Robinson stood firmly behind the team in their efforts to support Breast Cancer Awareness.

"We were all very excited to be here," said Robinson. "The team as a whole is setting a great example for the young girls in the community as well as their peers. Service, it's what we were here for, and what we all will continue to do."


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