Santa Ynez Valley Union High School football players “went pink” in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month at their home game against Pioneer Valley on Friday night.

Varsity and junior varsity players alike wore pink socks during the Oct. 27 games to recognize the national observance and to show their support for all those in the community battling cancer, varsity head coach Josh McClurg said.

Some of the players also wore pink wrist supports, and pink tape wrapped their ankle joints.

“Go Pink Night is a meaningful Santa Ynez football tradition as players and coaches honor all women in their fight against breast cancer, ” McClurg said prior to Friday night’s game. “This year it coincides with our Senior Night program, so it’s going to be a busy evening at Pirate Field.

“Last year we lost Carl Rio” he continued. “We want to recognize him and all those battling cancer. Carl and his son Jeff were integral parts of our football program at Santa Ynez.”

Santa Ynez High School Football Boosters held a fundraising drawing at the game for a Pirates football helmet signed by all the players, a 50/50 raffle and a Big Pink Bake Sale of cupcakes donated by Solvang Bakery along with other baked goods.

Karl Storz Imaging, a medical device company located in Goleta, pledged to match game-night donations up to $2,500 in support of this year’s fundraising effort, said Rich Crandall, vice president of the Football Boosters.

Crandall said 100 percent of the boosters’ fundraising proceeds will go to the Jeff Rio Memorial Scholarship Fund, and 100 percent of the matching contributions will go directly to Sansum’s Ridley-Tree Cancer Center & Specialty Care in Solvang.

This year Go Pink Night coincided with Senior Night, when all senior football players were recognized with their parents or escorts.

This report was compiled by News Editor Mike Hodgson. He can be reached at


News Editor

Mike Hodgson is news editor at the Santa Ynez Valley News, where he writes about local government, special events and the people who live in the Valley. He has been a photographer, writer, news editor and managing editor at weekly newspapers since 1972

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