POTSDAM, N.Y.-The SUNY Potsdam men’s hockey team is hosting Angelman Syndrome Awareness Night during its contest against No. 5 Hobart College on Saturday, November 23.
The event comes from Bears junior forward Jacob Juron (Latham, N.Y./South Shore Kings), who has seen families affected by the genetic disorder, which causes developmental disabilities and nerve-related symptoms.
“This is personal to me because of two close families to mine back home in Albany affected by it,” said Juron. “My strength coach, Leo Corvino’s son was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome and one of my close neighbors, Olivia Carney also has it. I wanted to do something special that hasn’t really been done yet. I know not many people are aware of Angelman Syndrome so I thought this could be a really cool opportunity for people to not only learn but make a difference.”
The Bears have already been raising money for the Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics or FAST. Juron says they have been seeking donations locally and have an auction and other activities planned for game night.
“So far we have some amazing items for an auction/raffle,” added Juron. “There will be a commemorative tee-shirts for sale. We will be wearing very unique custom jerseys that night, representing not only us, but also Angelman Syndrome. There are some other exciting things in the works as well. I’m very excited for the night to come.”
Community service and working for important causes are key parts of being a Bear, according to 11th-year head coach Chris Bernard.
“It has been a critical goal for our program to seek out opportunities to help charitable organizations with their objectives by supporting events and causes that impact our community,” Bernard said. “We have been grateful to work alongside so many great people as a result. However, to see one of our players (Juron) take such a vested interest in trying to make a difference, to create an impact, is something that gives us an ever greater sense of pride. He has approached every element of facilitating this event as a true professional and we could not be more happy to support him in all of his efforts. Further, we appreciate the chance to be part of the FAST team in raising money and awareness for Angelman Syndrome.”
Potsdam is back home for two SUNYAC contests this weekend. The Bears host Buffalo State at 7 p.m. on Friday and Fredonia at the same time on Saturday.