There was plenty of purple in the stands and on the field at Cheney Stadium on Saturday, August 9, as the Tacoma Rainiers donned their special Husky purple jerseys in support of UW Tacoma at the 2014 Paint the Park Purple event. The annual event puts the spotlight on South Sound students working to achieve a college degree, with proceeds from ticket sales benefiting UW Tacoma student scholarships.
A successful event since its inception in 2009, Paint the Park Purple has raised more than $75,000 dollars for the student scholarship fund. This year was no exception, as Cheney Stadium welcomed an enthusiastic crowd. In addition to the fans wearing their “Paint the Park Purple” T-shirts, UW Tacoma was well-represented by Will Key, a recent graduate of the UW Tacoma Master of Education program, who had the honor of throwing out the first pitch.
Faculty and staff were also on hand to cheer on the Rainiers. Among them, Bill Kunz, Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; Joshua Knudson, Vice Chancellor for Advancement; Harlan Patterson, Vice Chancellor for Finance; and Administration and Cedric Howard, Vice Chancellor for Student and Enrollment Services.
The evening may have been UW Tacoma-centric, but the Rainiers and the visiting Fresno Grizzlies still managed to put on a quite a show. It was an exciting game that can only be described as a barnburner. The Rainiers eked out a 13-10 win in spectacular fashion, when right fielder Stefen Romero hit a walk-off grand slam to left field in the bottom of the ninth, effectively ending what had been a dramatic offensive struggle between both teams.
With spirits high from the impressive finish, players and fans alike took part in an autographed jersey auction following the game. The money raised at the auction will also go to support the student scholarship fund.
It was a thrilling night of baseball that not only kept the fans on their feet, but had them cheering for UW Tacoma and its students as well.
John Burkhardt, Media Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org, 253-692-4536