Tigers find extra motivation for final conference game

Trujillo said of her mother: “If she can push through breast cancer, then I can get through a soccer game.”

At every soccer game, Missouri midfielder Lauren Flynn can be spotted on the field sporting a pink headband.

On Oct. 30, at the Tigers’ matchup with conference rival Arkansas, she will go beyond that.

Flynn said she will be wearing tape on her wrists with the name “Lucy Flynn” written on them for the annual Pack the Park and Pink Out match, which commemorates those who have had cancer in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Lucy Flynn is Lauren Flynn’s mother, who passed away from leukemia when Lauren was 12-years-old.

Lauren Flynn said the process happened quickly, but despite the tragedy, the Missouri native has used it as a motivating factor, particularly with her soccer career.

“It’s affected all aspects of my life,” Flynn said. “It makes you appreciate things more. You need to do everything you can to its fullest extent, so when I play, I play all out. You never know when things could be taken away.”

Flynn is not the lone player on the Tiger squad whose family has been affected by the disease. Freshman midfielder Savannah Trujillo’s mother is currently battling breast cancer.

Originally diagnosed in 2009, the cancer has returned multiple times.

Trujillo said she has always looked to her mother when she’s down, and it tends to put things into perspective whenever a game outcome looks bleak.

“(My mom’s) always the one to tell me to push through,” she said. “If she can push through breast cancer, then I can get through a soccer game.”

Trujillo said she sees her mother as a hardworking, caring and strong-willed person who has always been there which, in her eyes, makes the Arkansas game that much more important.

Both players are naturally looking to get a win, but they said the match goes beyond that.

“It means a lot more than just a soccer game,” Trujillo said. “It’s for people that you love. The best outcome would be to win for my mom and for all of the people that have been diagnosed with cancer.”

Although the event will not raise proceeds through game promotions, the team will auction off the players’ pink jerseys in the days following the match. All benefits will be donated to the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center.

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