BYFIELD — Fierce rivals on the field, the Newburyport and Triton girls lacrosse teams will put aside their differences and team up as part of an upcoming Coaches vs. Cancer fundraiser.
When the two squads face off next Friday night in Newburyport, fans will be encouraged to make a donation to help support the American Cancer Society.
Then the next morning, players and coaches from the two teams will help run a youth lacrosse clinic for local players from Newburyport and the Triton communities at Triton from 8:30 to 10 a.m., and all proceeds raised by the clinic will go to support the ACS.
This will be the third year the two programs have hosted the Coaches vs. Cancer fundraiser. The tradition started in 2012 after Triton head coach Stacey Beaulieu came up with the idea and then pitched it to Newburyport coach Catherine Batchelder, who was on board from the get-go.
“I just think the fact that we do this is great,” Batchelder said. “It’s great for our two programs to come together and not only offer a joint clinic but also raise money for such an important cause.”
Beaulieu said she got the idea from a number of similar Coaches vs. Cancer fundraisers that are held at high schools and colleges around the country. She added that cancer has had a profound impact on her life, and raising money to help fight the disease was a cause she felt strongly about.
“It’s very personal because I’ve lost a lot of family members to cancer, and it seemed like a good fit for Newburyport at the time because the year we started it was the year their field hockey coach had been diagnosed with breast cancer,” Beaulieu said. “So it was a good combination, everyone had a reason to do something for cancer. It’s touched a lot of people and families.”