BY GIGI PICARD ’22
In the Mount Holyoke Lyons soccer matchup against Saint Joseph University on Sept. 19, the team adorned their cleats in rainbow laces to honor the Play with Pride Week, a program run through the United Soccer Coaches Association (USCA).
The event ran through the week of Sept. 16 to 22, and this year was the Lyons first time participating. USCA’s LGBT & Allies Coaches Advocacy Group originally developed the program, now in its third year. High school, club and college teams across the country are eligible to participate and register through USCA to receive their rainbow laces.
The purpose of Play with Pride is to raise awareness for the inclusion and diversity of both coaches and athletes, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity.
“I think that it is important for MHC Soccer to represent our college overall mission for diversity and inclusion for all,” said Head Soccer Coach Kanae Haneishi. “The important takeaway for our players was to be proud of who they are, support and respect each other as well as get involved in these type of program and movements for social changes.”