Teams look past rivalry

Tiffin University Dragons will take on the University of Findlay Oilers at the University of Findlay in a basketball doubleheader at 1 p.m. today and again at 3 p.m. However, they are no ordinary games for a girl named Addison.

The student athletes are raising funds to be “wish granters” for Addision.

For people who cannot make it to the game at Findlay, TU is to host games for Addison at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Feb. 9.

Last fall, student athletes Joe Graessle and Mike Brown, of Tiffin, and Findlay Student Athlete Advisory Committees met for an annual GLIAC/SAAC fall meeting in Bay City, Mich.

Representatives from Tiffin and Findlay collaborated on how they could make a substantial monetary donation to the GLIAC/SAAC’s charity of choice, the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Ideas flourished from conversations, text messages and emails, and the result was #addisonswish. The athletes decided to take advantage of the large conference rivalry between the two schools that are only 30 minutes apart.

Student athletes from Tiffin and Findlay decided to become “wish granters” for a young girl named Addison, who has been diagnosed with a disease called soft tissue sarcoma. Addison’s wish is to go to Nickelodeon Water Park so she can swim with the dolphins, while enjoying the warm Florida sun.

“The students wanted to make more of an impact this year,” SAAC adviser Vickie Galaska said.

Both institutions had T-shirts made which they will wear for warm-up on the day of the games at Findlay and Tiffin. Tiffin will wear green and Findlay will wear orange, but the same message will be on both T-shirts: “#addisonswish > the rivalry.”

“Our guest of honor, Addison, will be present at the game and her basketball team will be able to play at halftime of the men’s games,” Galaska said.

The students wanted to use the rivalry between the schools to help raise money for Addison, Galaska said.

“The students believe that this rivalry means nothing when raising money for someone,” she said.

Other sports teams also have helped raise money and honor Addison’s wish such as the wrestling and equestrian teams.

Anyone who would like to make a donation to #addisonswish, call Galaska at (419) 448-3334 or attend any of the basketball games.