It's Suits & Sneakers week for Coaches Vs Cancer of NEPA. It's a meaningful week for the local, high school basketball community, but it's particularly meaningful this year for the Scranton Prep girls team.
That's because one of their players is battling the disease. Grace Stampien was diagnosed with leukemia during last season's district tournament. The Prep senior is still going through chemotherapy. Stampien has been well-enough to attend a few of her team's games this season, but is not as present as she'd like to be.
The Classics have dedicated this season to Stampien and that inspiration along with their talent is going a long way. The Classics are a perfect 16-0 so far - our number one team in our Super 16 Countdown.
"This game, this week means so much to us because our team has been affected by it," Scranton Prep junior guard Rachel Rose said. "Grace - we think about her every day in practice and we know she'd kill to be here with us and so, it just means so much to us."
"We know she's going through a rough time right now," Scranton Prep junior guard Cecelia Collins added. "We just want to do whatever we can - play for her always and we know she would want to be here. So, we're definitely playing for her."
"We found out last year, right before the district final that Grace Stampien had leukemia," Scranton Prep Girls Basketball Coach Bob Beviglia said. "As a group, they dedicated themselves to playing for her and she's our family and we take care of our family and they play for her. I think they understand more than anything, Grace would hope that she could be here with us. We want her back with us as soon as we possible can get her, but this group understands that basketball is a part of their lives, but health is really the most important thing certainly. I told them right before they came out that tonight they need to pray for Grace and for her to get healthy and come back to us."