The entire basketball coaching community is responding to a plea from University of Houston men’s basketball coach Kelvin Sampson for donations to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey, and both Bellarmine men’s and women’s coaches (Scott Davenport and Chancellor Dugan) are overseeing donations from Bellarmine to the cause.

The basketball angle to the relief effort has a particularly poignant meaning for the Bellarmine women’s team as sophomore Taylor Hunter is from the Houston suburb of Cypress, Texas. While her family came through the storm mostly unharmed, her family’s home sustained damage and her entire neighborhood has endured widespread flooding.

Hunter’s parents, Laryssa and Perry Hunter, avoided being in the Houston area due to bringing Taylor back to Bellarmine for the fall semester. They were in Louisville from last Wednesday through Saturday, then drove back to Dallas instead of their native Cypress to miss the storm. After spending the next several days in Dallas, the Hunters headed back to their home today, stopping in Waco, Texas for groceries due to the lack of services available back home.

“It’s really emotional for me to see my home and neighborhood practically destroyed,” Taylor Hunter said. “But at the same time it’s also emotional in a good way seeing how everybody is coming together to help.”

In response to Sampson’s plea for help, Bellarmine’s men’s and women’s teams have gathered T-shirts and shoes for the relief effort and other departments on Bellarmine’s campus are also chipping in sportswear and Bellarmine gear. The Knights Hall lobby has been designated a drop off site for Bellarmine donations on Thursday (Aug. 31). The Bellarmine care package is set to be shipped on Friday to Houston where Sampson and his team will distribute the donations.

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