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Point Park University Women's Basketball Team Helping Boy Battling Cancer

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Two basketball teams battled it out on the court Wednesday night, but the focus wasn't on the game. The players and fans were doing something special for a 2-year-old boy who is battling cancer.

Just before Christmas, little Aiden Zangrilli was diagnosed with leukemia. At just 2 years of age, he's been through so much already – two rounds of chemotherapy and he's starting his third. And now word that he may need a stem cell transplant.

That's where the Point Park University women's basketball team comes into play. They are used to battling it out on the court, but now they are helping Aiden battle cancer.

"I think that it sends a message to go help others and hopefully the word gets out about Aiden," said Kelly Johnson, a sophomore point guard.

Johnson heard about Aiden's fight and suggested the team rally behind him.

Aiden's treatment is costly, and his family members have taken time off work to be by his side.

"Aiden is a gift," said Ralph Zangrilli, the boy's grandfather.

Wednesday's game against Carlow University raised money to help with his care.

"We are just happy that our proceeds are going to go to someone who will use it immediately and needs it and is part of our community," said Tony Grenek, the head basketball coach at Point Park.

On top of that, the team is helping Aiden find a match. They set up a swabbing booth and fans lined up to see if their bone marrow would work for Aiden or any other patient battling the disease.

If you'd like to learn more about how you can help Aiden in his fight against cancer, visit:


And the kindness of strangers is not lost on Aiden's family.

"I'm struck by the kindness of people, people we don't even know to put on an event like this… just really touched by that," said Aiden's grandfather.

It may be Point Park versus Carlow, but everyone is hoping the victory goes to Aiden.

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