Women's Hockey Making Impact as THON Approaches

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By Tom Shively, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa - As the temperature dropped, so did the beat on Wednesday night in Freeman Auditorium as members of various Penn State athletic teams came together for the annual SAAB Lip Sync Battle benefitting THON. 

The event, now in its second go-around, has gained notoriety because it is one of the few events throughout the year, outside of THON itself, where most Penn State teams come together to support a common cause in the same place. 

Aly Hardy, Kate Rydland and Kelsey Crow represented the women's hockey team, performing a stirring rendition of Beyoncé's "Single Ladies" in front of a packed house.

 "It's something for a great cause, we're raising money for that," Hardy said. "To be able to raise money and do something fun at the same time, to have our friends come out and make fools of ourselves, it's a lot of fun and it goes towards something so special."

Seeing the entertaining side of some of the other Penn State student-athletes is always an enjoyable experience, especially in something as fun and playful as a lip sync battle. 

"We don't get to see that a lot, so it's really special when everybody gets together. Not all teams could come out, but we had a lot of people there. It was a good turnout," Hardy said.

Unfortunately for Hardy, Rydland and Crow, they were outdone by the women's soccer team's performance of Sia's "Chandelier" which earned the top spot.

"They did a really good job," Hardy said. "We didn't get to watch it, but we saw a video after and they did really well."

 The team is helping out the community on the ice too, as this Saturday marks the return of the annual "Skate for the Cure" game at Pegula Ice Arena. The game aims to help raise funds for cancer research and is always one of the premier weekends for women's hockey.

 "It's really something special to skate for something that's bigger than you," Victoria Samuelsson said. "You realize that you have it great here and to play for them means a lot." 

"It's a big deal for this team," coach Dean Jackson said. "They hold it at a special place in their heart and they take a lot of pride in what the university does and now with the program helping out in that cause." 

Pegula will be decked out in pink, as fans who wear pink to the game will get in for free. Last year's edition of the game drew 1,373 fans, the highest total for that season.

The "Skate for the Cure" game will be at 2 p.m. Saturday against Mercyhurst. The teams also face off Friday night at 6 p.m. 

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