False MI Prep Zone: Melvindale dedicates 2014 season to former Cardinal PHOTOS
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Melvindale dedicates 2014 season to former Cardinal PHOTOS

  • The Melvindale softball team, pictured with former player Danielle Sauve, has dedicated its 2014 season to Sauve. Photos by Samantha Elliott
  • The Cardinals will don violet warm up jerseys this season in honor of Danielle Sauve, a former player who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

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Sometimes a sports season can be more about the game; more than the wins and losses and big rivalries. Sometimes, players are playing for a deeper meaning, a more personal meaning.

That is the case for the Melvindale softball team this season. The girls have dedicated their season to former Cardinal player Danielle Sauve.

Older sister to current player Hailey Sauve, she was recently diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Melvindale Coach Rey Linares was moved with his team’s decision to dedicate the season.

“The entire team approached me and asked if they could dedicate the season to Danielle, as a show of support and strength for her, and to also let her know what she meant to the Cardinal softball program,” Linares said. “Needless to say how much this meant to the coaching staff as well, and we are extremely pleased with how the entire team, Cardinal softball program, school and community have rallied around in support.”

The idea to dedicate the season came during a pre-season softball meeting back in January. The entire group of returning varsity players asked Linares if they could speak to him alone after the meeting.

“They told me that they collectively, as a group and team would really like to dedicate the upcoming season to Danielle, and would I be okay with it,” Linares said. “My immediate response to them was that I would in fact not be okay with it, but instead that I would insist on it.

“To see the look of happiness on their faces was something I will never forget.”

The team originally discussed buying violet arm bands or bracelets, the official support color for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. After thinking the idea over, Linares decided warm-up jerseys would be a better way for the team to show support to Danielle.

Linares contacted Adver-Tees, a local Melvindale based customer apparel supplier and chatted with the owner about what type of jerseys he was looking for and why.

Adver-Tees owner Gary Shalogian insisted that he would not accept money for the jerseys and would instead donate them as his contribution and support for the team.

“Needless to say how excited and pleased we were to get the support of a local business,” Linares said. “We really wanted to thank and acknowledge Adver-Tees for stepping up and insisting on donating the Team Dani jerseys.”

The jerseys are the violet support color and the back features the words “Team Dani” and the number one; the number Danielle wore during her three years with the Cardinals.

The team will also be wearing violet arm bands during select games throughout the season as another way to show support.

Danielle was team captain during her senior year, was the team’s leadoff hitter and played several positions including catcher, first base and outfield.

After several chemotherapy sessions, Danielle is doing very well and was recently reported being cancer free.

“She is a brave and courageous young lady that attacked her medical situation head on, similar to her approach to playing softball during her time on the varsity team here at Melvindale,” Linares said. “I know she will continue to do well and be an example and leader for others facing similar challenges.

“The Lady Cardinals are really looking forward to playing this season in support of Danielle.”

Last Updated: 4/29/2014 3:37:03 PM EST