Wareham girls basketball team to receive state honor for fundraising efforts

Feb 4, 2018

The Wareham girls basketball team helped raise $12,366 for a family in need this year and will be honored for its efforts with a state award on Feb. 14.

In January, the team donated all proceeds from ticket and raffle sales raised during one game to the Semiao family. Players raised $6,183, which was matched with a donation from Eastern Bank. The money will help pay medical bills for Kerryn Semiao, a Wareham woman who suffered a stroke. She is currently recovering at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Center.

The team will receive the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association’s Educational Athletic Achievement Award. The ceremony will take place before the team’s Feb. 14 home game. Tip off is at 6 p.m.

This marks the fourth year that players have picked a local family in need to support.

“I always cry when the family comes out to half court when we present them with the money,” said senior and co-captain Madison Pinkston. “It feels good to know you’re helping somebody out in town.”

Head Coach David Brogioli said the team has raised roughly $29,000 over the past four years. He noted the event has grown each year.

“The whole community gets involved,” he said, adding the effort serves as a teaching experience.

“The whole idea is to let the students know that they can make a difference in the world,” said Brogioli. “Working as a team, they find out they are stronger together.”

He said Semiao is on the road to the recovery and is getting “stronger every day.”

Senior and co-captain Gabby Lefrancois said the event is hard work, but brings a lot of people together for a good cause.

“It’s really taken off,” she said. “Every year it gets bigger and more and more people come out to donate.”

Last year, the team earned the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Team Sportsmanship Award for its efforts in raising $8,000. The funds went to Madelyn Alexander, a 4-year-old who was diagnosed with leukemia.