DURHAM, N.H. - The University of New Hampshire women’s basketball team held its first-ever National Girls and Women in Sports Day game against the University of Hartford on Sunday, Feb. 16.
Prior to the game, members of the UNH athletic department and student-athletes provided enrichment, face-painting and poster-making to members in attendance. Furthermore, the UNH cheerleading squad taught a cheer during halftime. Children up to the eighth grade gained free admission into the game.
"The NGWSD was a huge success and we are excited to continue to build this great event at UNH,” said women’s basketball head coach Maureen Magarity. “We had a fantastic crowd for our overtime win against Hartford and appreciate everyone who was involved in making the day happen."
“Our first NGWSD was a fun day for youngsters and parents,” said Cathy Coakley, coordinator of student-athlete development. “Our UNH student-athletes, male and female, along with the Cat Crew, did a great job hosting the pre-game activities. I thank everyone involved for making this a very successful day."
“The event was a huge success with a season-high in attendance for women's basketball,” said Amber Lilyestrom, associate athletic director for marketing & strategic initiatives. “The involvement from student-athletes was tremendous and provided a welcoming environment for fans. We wanted to provide interactive activities, such as poster-making and face painting, in order for the kids to make connections with our student-athletes. We feel the day was a success and one to build on for the future.”
NGWSD began in 1987 as a day to remember Olympic volleyball player Flo Hyman for her athletic achievements and her work to assure equality for women's sports. Hyman died of Marfan's Syndrome in 1986 while competing in a volleyball tournament in Japan. Since that time, NGWSD has evolved into a day to acknowledge the past and recognize current sports achievements, the positive influence of sports participation, and the continuing struggle for equality and access for women in sports.
NGWSD is celebrated in all 50 states with community-based events, award ceremonies, and activities honoring the achievements and encouraging participation of girls and women in sports. NGWSD is jointly organized by the National Girls and Women in Sport Coalition. The Coalition combines the experience and resources of four premiere girls- and women-serving organizations in the United States: Girls Incorporated, the National Association for Girls and Women in Sport, National Women's Law Center and the Women's Sports Foundation.
Collectively, these organizations have been in existence for over 432 years and have a membership reach of 5.5 million girls and women.
For more information about UNH athletics and Wildcats in the Community, be sure to visit UNHWildcats.com and look for the Wildcats in the Community page presented by Kennebunk Savings.