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PHILADELPHIA - Heading into the final weekend of the regular season, No. 23 Penn will partner with a championship cause during its final two duals of the season, sporting gold laces all weekend as part of the "Lace-Up 4 Pediatric Cancer" program with the Go4TheGoal Foundation.
Founded in 2007 by Dr. Richard and Beth Stefanacci after their son, Richard, was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma , Go4TheGoal was created to help families "battling pediatric cancer travel this road with a little more security, dignity and normalcy."
In addition to providing financial support to families, Go4TheGoal grants wishes to patients and helps to support pediatric oncology units with creative programs and state of the art electronics. According to Go4TheGoal.org, since 2007 the foundation has funded over half a million dollars in innovative research.
The Lace-Up 4 Pediatric Cancer awareness campaign first started in September of 2011 to honor Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Since then, numerous professional, collegiate, high school and youth teams have worn gold shoelaces during competition to promote the campaign.
This weekend, Penn's wrestling team will become the first collegiate wrestling program to join the movement when the Quakers wear the gold laces in their duals against Princeton (Saturday at 1 p.m.) and Drexel (Sunday at 1 p.m.)
"We are honored to be the first collegiate wrestling program to participate in the Lace-Up campaign," head coach Rob Eiter said. "This is a chance for our program to help raise awareness of the fight to cure pediatric cancer and support the great work the Go4TheGoal Foundation is doing."
All funds raised stay within the community they are raised in to support the over 60 hospitals across the United States currently partnered with Go4TheGoal - including the Children's Hospital of Pennsylvania across the street from The Palestra where this weekend's competition will take place.
Admission to both duals will be free for all fans to see the Quakers compete for the final time before the EIWA Championships at Rutgers on March 8-9.