There’s a lot riding on the Wilton High School girls’ basketball home game this Tuesday, Jan. 9, but it doesn’t have anything to do with whether they win or lose. When the Women Warriors face off at home against Westport’s Staples High School, they’ll be playing to fight cancer. Donations will be accepted at the door and all other proceeds from the evening will benefit the American Cancer Society.

Tuesday’s game begins at 7 p.m., and the team will host a brief ceremony prior to the tip-off. Much-loved Middlebrook teacher and cancer survivor John Priest will make brief remarks. Fans are encouraged to attend and help support the fundraising effort.

The evening is part of the Coaches vs. Cancer program, and schools take part all over the country.

In Wilton, the effort is being spearheaded by WHS senior Lauren Robertson, in her second year organizing the fundraiser. At last year’s Coaches vs. Cancer game, the team raised over $600 to benefit the American Cancer Society, which Robertson says was a success–but she wants to make this year’s result even bigger, raising more money and notching a higher community and fan turnout.

“Both teams really enjoyed the opportunity to play for something bigger than just themselves. Everyone on the girls basketball team has been touched by cancer in some way, so I thought it’d be great to join hands with the community and make a meaningful difference. With more people, our town can make more of a difference and our team definitely wants a crowd to cheer us on as we play Staples in a very important game,” says Robertson.

Fans are being asked to “paint the field house pink” by wearing pink attire, and she hopes they’ll turn out in force.

“It’s always really special when high school student athletes get the chance to combine their passions of athletics and service. We would love for everyone to come support our basketball program and our efforts by attending the game this Tuesday! Thank you, Wilton, for being the difference!”

Many of the players and their classmates will continue their support for the cancer fighting organization, participating as members of teams in this year’s Relay for Life event.

The home game will be played at Wilton High School’s Zeoli Field House, 395 Danbury Rd./Rt. 7.