Garden City, NY – The HEADstrong Foundation™ is a non-profit organization rooted in the game which was founded by former Hofstra lacrosse player Nicholas “HEAD” Colleluori during his battle with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. The Lizards have decided to team up with the HEADstrong Foundation this season to raise awareness and funds to support their fight against blood cancers.
HEADstrong Foundation™ advocates, fundraises and supports those affected by blood cancers and those working towards eliminating the disease. They are dedicated to helping both patients and families navigate the harrowing ordeal of cancer by providing assistance, guidance and essential services oriented in improving quality of life. In 2012, HEADstrong Foundation™ was recognized as a charity partner of the MLL All-Star Game in at FAU Stadium in Palm Beach County, FL.
Since their inception the Lizards have been committed to service initiatives within the community but this season, with 9 players having formerly played with Nick Colleluori and 5 home games scheduled at Hofstra’s James M. Shuart Stadium where he played collegiately, there is further meaning behind this special season.
The Lizards have many things planned for the 2013 season. The team has adopted HEADstrong’s Laces for Lymphoma as part of their official team uniform. Additionally, as part of the Score For A Cure campaign, Lizards friends and fans will be able to pledge donations for every stat the Lizards record during the 2013 season. The Lizards will also recognize a player from each game as the HEADstrong player of the game. The Lizards will also host a HEADstrong Awareness Game during the 2013 season.
Lizards Defenseman CJ Costabile currently serves as the 2013 Player Spokesman for the HEADstrong Foundation™. He is an ambassador of the cause within the game and has worked closely with the organization over the past year to promote awareness at the professional level.
“We are really looking forward to getting the season underway. We are honored represent Nick Colleluori and the HEADstrong Foundation on the field this year. There are a lot of guys on the team that have been personally impacted and inspired by Nick’s life. It is rather fitting to represent him at Hofstra this summer.”
CJ Costabile, New York Lizards Defenseman
Aside from Costabile, Lizards players including: Drew Adams, Brian Christopher, Greg Gurenlian, Athan Iannucci, Michael Skudin, Michael Unterstein, Kevin Unterstein all had the pleasure of calling Nick Colleluori a teammate at some point in time during their playing career.
“I think the HEADstrong organization stands for everything that Nick was. Nick was a very loyal, genuine and hardworking teammate. Always doing the right thing, always putting others before him, and that’s basically what the HEADstrong Foundation is. They’re always trying to help. It’s just one of those organizations that stand out to me. I love to working with them and helping out from now into the future.”
Mike Unterstein, New York Lizards Defenseman and former teammate of Nick
“On behalf of the HEADstrong Foundation, our family and our Founder Nicholas “HEAD” Colleluori we wish to extend our sincere gratitude and appreciation to the New York Lizards for their support and commitment in 2013. It is really special to see so many of Nick’s former teammates upholding the meaning behind HEADstrong and uniting together on the playing field to share his vision at the professional level. We are honored to call the New York Lizards partners in our fight against blood cancers and we look forward to a wonderful collaborative relationship.”
Cheryl Colleluori, HEADstrong President and Nick’s Mom
Please be sure to like us on Facebook.com/HEADstrongFoundation and follow us on Twitter @HEADstrongFND
To donate to the Lizards’ Score For A Cure campaign, please click here.