GORHAM, Maine – University of Southern Maine student-athlete Ally Little (Stoneham, Mass.), a member of the Huskies' women's soccer team, has recently been diagnosed with severe Aplastic Anemia. A rare and serious condition, Aplastic Anemia can develop at any age. Treatment for Aplastic Anemia is varied and may include medications, blood transfusions or a stem cell transplant – also known as a bone marrow transplant.
While Ally is at home and still in the process of determining the best path for treatment, she will likely need a stem cell transplant. But she will need to find a match. Unable to find a match within her family, and with no current 10/10 matches in the donor registries, USM women's soccer is hosting a donor registry drive on February 8 on both the University's Gorham and Portland campuses. Potential donors will be able to join USM women's soccer at either the Abromson Mezzanine from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. (Portland Campus) and the Costello Sports Complex Lobby from 2:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (Gorham Campus).
"When the team learned of Ally's diagnosis they immediately wanted to help. It is hard to know what to do in these circumstances, but organizing a drive was an easy decision," noted USM women's soccer coach Lisa Petruccelli. "USM soccer is reaching out to other college teams, making posters, signing up to volunteer, and to be donors. The USM community and college soccer community responded immediately. We hope people will come and swab to be a potential donor."
USM Athletics and Huskies' women's soccer hopes that with enough new donors a match will be found for Ally. Registering is simple: if you are 18-44 years old, stop by one of the tables, fill out some basic paperwork and swab the inside of your cheek.
For more information about the condition, the treatment or the donor process please check out www.bethematch.org