By: Paige Radel

Your University of Evansville women’s soccer team made history Sunday August 27th at Arad McCutchan Stadium. Just three days into the school year and Ace country has shown up in a BIG way. A twenty-year-old attendance record was broken, and the fans were electric! What was the significance of the game you may be asking? Welp, that’s right where I am about to begin…


The opponent, Indiana University, may have played a role in the large attendance, as they had some Evansville natives battling against their hometown rivals, yet this was not the only excitement to be found in the stadium. The Purple Aces were competing for more than a goal; they were “Kicking for a Cause.”


The UE soccer team partnered with Samaritan’s Feet, a nonprofit with a mission to provide shoes to local students in need throughout the Evansville community. Thanks to the added support of the UE softball team, lots of those in attendance were able to hear about the impact this nonprofit is hoping to have.


This game was only the kickoff to the campaign spearheaded by sophomore forward Paige Radel. Over the course of the school year, Samaritan’s Feet will be collecting donations to provide these shoes. Through her link, anyone can donate to the cause. Every $25 will provide one pair of tennis shoes, socks, a drawstring bag, and a personalized hope note to a student in need. These items will then be given to students by the women’s soccer team or other volunteers in person at a shoe distribution which will be scheduled after enough donations have been received.


What is the significance of shoes? Well actually, shoes hold much more power than what meets the eye. 1.5 billion (yes I said billion,) people are infected with foot-borne illness that could have been prevented with proper footwear, additionally, shoes and socks are in the top 5 of items most needed by students in America. This is not all though; shoes often give students confidence in the classroom and amongst their peers which aids in the prevention of bullying.


In summary, these shoes generate HOPE.


H- Health: shoes protect students from harmful diseases and rough ground

O- Opportunity: shoes provide stability and the chance for a brighter future

P- Peace: shoes make communities stronger and allow them to unite

E- Education: shoes give students confidence in the classroom


The desire to give HOPE to those local students in need is evident throughout Ace country as almost $900 has been raised following the charity soccer game. This is not the end though; if you wish to help contribute to this HOPE fund or just want to learn more, please check out the website below or scan the QR code!

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