Play Pink enters its second year

Play Pink enters its second year

 

Lisa Crandall, left, a professor at NMJC throws out the first pitch Saturday afternoon during the T-Birds Play Pink game at Ray Birmingham Field. T-Birds' skipper Jimmy Durham, right, watches as Crandall throws her pitch.

 

JASON FARMER NEWS-SUN

 

When New Mexico Junior College baseball skipper Jimmy Durham came returned to the Thunderbirds as their newest head coach two years ago, one of the things he started was the T-Birds Play Pink game at Ray Birmingham Field. Durham, who lost his wife to cancer, wants to give back the organization that helped him, Angel Flights.

 

Saturday, when NMJC hosted Luna College in a Western Junior College Athletic Conference, the T-Birds held their Second Annual Play Pink Game.

 

"We are going to do it every year I am here," Durham said. "It is a great charity and it is very close to me. It is one of those charities that goes unnoticed and you don't know how important they are until you have to use them and need them.

 

"We raised about $5,000 last year for them and they get every penny. We don't get one penny," the skipper continued. "Hopefully we will do a little bit better this year."

 

The T-Birds had Play Pink shirts made and were selling them during the game at Ray Birmingham Field. Last year the team also held a silent auction during the game. This year it was moved.

 

"This year we are doing it a little different," Durham said. "We are not going to do the auction during the spring here. We are going to do it closer to the basketball kickoff of the season and maybe auction off things during the basketball season. We have a lot of great items, even better than last year."

 

NMJC professor Lisa Crandall and breast cancer survivor held the honor of throwing out the game's first pitch.

 

"She will be leaving after this year," Durham said. "She is going to Vernon in a high capacity, a dean of some sort. We just really want to send her out on a really good note. And thank here."

 

With Durham to her left, Crandall threw out the first pitch to freshman catcher Cade Acrey while the rest of the T-Birds watched from the third base line.

 

The T-Birds went to beat Luna College 2-0 behind a complete game shutout from sophomore starter Anthony Montoya. The T-Birds scored the game's only runs in the bottom of the first.