Serving up hope

Published 4:51 pm Thursday, September 22, 2011

Members of the Albert Lea girls’ tennis team pose for a photo Thursday in their pink tie-dyed T-shirts. -- Andrew Dyrdal

Before each match, two members of the Albert Lea girls’ tennis team provide some sort of inspiration to motivate their teammates.

Sometimes it’s as simple as a bracelet and a snack.

On Thursday, the team played for breast cancer awareness and in memory of sophomore Erin Murtaugh’s mother, Geri, who died of cancer in August 2010, and in honor of sophomore Claire Ellis’s mom, who is a breast cancer survivor.

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The entire team of around 20 players, and coaches Wayne Prudoehl and Holly Bohlen, wore pink, tie-dyed T-shirts with pink ribbons tied in their shoelaces.

According to Ellis, the girls made their shirts together as a team-bonding experience at the beginning of the school year. Some players wore tie-dyed bandannas, too.

The match between Albert Lea and Winona at Albert Lea High School was played with pink Wilson Hope all-court tennis balls, and 1 percent of the sale of the product was donated to breast cancer research.