Every year, the Gannon Basketball Teams set aside one game, designated as the “Pink Zone Game.” The game is arranged as a benefit for Breast Cancer Awareness, and this year it features a match-up between the Golden Knights and their cross-town rival, Mercyhurst. The game is scheduled for Saturday, January 31 at 1 pm. However, planning for this event has been happening since before the season started, according to Women’s Basketball Coach Jim Brunelli.

“Coach Deville and I started meeting in September to get this event ready,” Brunelli said. “It’s not really something you can plan in a month. It takes a lot of collaboration, and we wouldn’t be able to pull this off without all of the people on the Pink Zone Committee. We’re just very thankful that we have a passionate group of people that care about this cause.”

In addition to the game being focused around Breast Cancer Awareness, it features the second match-up of the season between Mercyhurst and Gannon, with the Knights taking both match-ups: the Lady Knights by three points, the Golden Knights by two, so it is guaranteed to be a very tough match-up, but Coach Brunelli is confident.

“We are a very different team than we were in November, when we first played them,” Brunelli said. “We were very bare-bones offensively at that time, and we have been able to gather depth since then.”

Despite the length of time between the two games, the first match-up is still very much on everyone’s minds.

“You always look at the previous game when you play an opponent more than once,” Brunelli said. “You never really take anything with a clean slate. We are definitely playing better now than we were in those first three games, so we have that going for us, which is nice.”

The Lady Knights will be looking forward to the game eventually, but for right now, they are taking things one day at a time.

“It’s tough, because we are planning events for the game,” Brunelli said. “We aren’t looking at the game itself yet, but it will be fun to pull everything together with this last push of meetings and planning.”

Tip-off for the Pink Zone is 1 pm for the Lady Knights and 3 pm for the Golden Knights. Both games will be played in the Hammermill Center. For more details about the game, visit www.gannonsports.com