Team Pink: Preparation for the Big Day

Team Pink: Preparation for the Big Day

Pink and White. The most anticipated game of the year where four schools that battle it out in the name of cancer research. But what will this year look like for Team Pink? I spoke to 2nd-year head coach, Rob Owen, about changing the culture of Team Pink and bringing home the trophy this year.

For Owen, the preparation doesn’t start after tryouts. He stated, “Our coaches started meeting in November with a purpose and that was to CHANGE THE CULTURE of TEAM PINK. In order to change a culture, the head coach must surround himself with great coaches that will work for a common goal.”  Watching film, planned out practices and growing the players’ football IQ is only some of the goals Owen hopes to accomplish this year. What else? Owen states he expects, “Team Pink will play like a bunch of DAWGS and have a ‘Lion Mentality’!”

Team Pink has been made up of strong and athletic women for many years now, this being the 17th game since 2008, but the Rockets have not taken the trophy home in over 5 years. In response to this, Owen said, “We will be prepared! The girls on this team will be prepared and that will show on the field. The culture changed with last year’s team and this year we will see the next step. Team Pink coaches have already been meeting and planning for this year’s game. We are prepared for tryouts and will select the best 25 girls that will buy in and help us win.” Not only will April 26th be a big day for Coach Owen and the players, but the Assumption community as well. When asked about his response to seeing Assumption fans in the stands last year, he said, “All of your faculty and staff come together to put on not just a game but an event. There is no other sporting event that almost the entire student body and faculty attend. We all come together to support our team and school. The students are unbelievable, they dress up in all pink and cheer louder than any group of students I have ever seen…This is an event that brings everyone together, including alumni that come back to cheer on Team Pink for years.” Each year, the numbers continuously raise, reaching over 6,000 attendees at the 2023 game.


While this day can be overly competitive between rivals Assumption and Sacred Heart, the meaning behind the game goes far beyond football. “It brings 4 school communities together cheering for their team and fighting for one cause… Each of us at some point in our lives have been affected by cancer… We often use the term fighting/fighter when we talk about someone battling cancer.  Each girl will fight for someone during this game, they will fight for a cancer survivor or someone who is a memory.  They will fight for each other,” Owen states on the importance of the game. This year, Owen will be ‘fighting’ a little extra in memory of someone he lost to a battle with cancer. “I know I have been hit hard this year with the loss of my Brother-in-law Jeff Hepler to cancer.  He was not only family but a best friend.  I will be coaching harder than I have ever coached for him and this team.  This game may just help someone beat cancer and that makes everything worth it.”

To end, Coach Owen left a message for this year’s senior class of 2024. “You must want it, you have to work for it, you have to buy in to the process and give everything you have…

 Lastly, when the dust settles on Friday April 26th, 2024, this class WILL BE the class that brings the trophy home.”

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