Newswise — New Mexico’s senators and representatives will face each other in an end-of-session, hotly contested basketball game February 5. The Senate “Lobos” have beaten the House of Representatives “Aggies” in the last four consecutive games. But, everyone on the court and in the stands knows that the real opponent is cancer.

The game has been a tradition for 17 years. In 2004, lawmakers began raising money to help New Mexicans facing cancer, in honor of Representative Ray Ruiz who died of lung cancer that year. Since 2007, the ‘Hoops 4 Hope’ game has raised more than $180,000. All proceeds benefit patient care at The University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center.

“We serve the people of New Mexico,” says Cheryl Willman, MD, Director and CEO of the UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center. “The proceeds from this game help us to deliver the cutting-edge, compassionate care that all New Mexicans deserve.” The American Cancer Society estimated that 10,040 New Mexicans received a cancer diagnosis and 3,630 died from cancer in 2017. The UNM Cancer Center is the only cancer center designated by the National Cancer Institute in the state of New Mexico.

Traditionally, varsity coaches from UNM and New Mexico State University have coached the legislative teams in the ‘Hoops 4 Hope’ game. UNM has announced that Football Head Coach Bob Davie will coach the Senate “Lobos.” NMSU has announced that Football Head Coach Doug Martin will coach the House of Representatives “Aggies.”

About the Hoops 4 Hope basketball game

The ‘Hoops 4 Hope’ legislative basketball game will be played Monday, February 5, 2018, in the Santa Fe Indian School Gymnasium, 1501 Cerrillos Road, Santa Fe, NM 87505. Tip-off is at 7:00 pm.

Admission is free and open to the public. Donations will be accepted and greatly appreciated. All proceeds benefit patient care at the UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Questions may be addressed to the UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center Development Office. Call 505-272-4443 or email [email protected]