By Robert Cavanaugh
LAKEWOOD – Prior to the Sky Blue FC women’s professional soccer team taking the field for practice at Georgian Court University Wednesday morning, the team and Meridian Health announced that Meridian Health was the title sponsor for the 2014 season.
During a joint press conference held outside on the Georgian Court University soccer field, Sky Blue also revealed Meridian Health’s logo will be on the front of the team’s new light blue and orange team jerseys.
“What this partnership is about is two organizations of families and people cheering for each other,” said Jim Gooley, director of sales for Sky Blue FC. “When we cheer for a woman on the field, she gets strong, she takes it with her, but gives it back.”
With more than 12,000 employees, Meridian Health is comprised of Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel, Jersey Shore University Medical Center and K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin and Meridian Partner companies, all located at more than 100 locations throughout Monmouth and Ocean counties.
“We are excited to bring the great care we provide to this community to the players of Sky Blue,” said John K. Lloyd, president of Meridian Health. ”We look forward to partnering with Sky Blue FC to help us educate families and fans across the state about important health and wellness topics.”
Sky Blue FC is led by former Monmouth University standout and current United States National Team Captain Christie Rampone, who has been the spokesperson for K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital for the past five years.
“She’s been instrumental in helping us raise the awareness of the children’s hospital in our community and engaging with schools and the community to promote a healthy lifestyle,” Lloyd said. “I’m sure we’ll see her friends Hopscotch, Doctor Bernard and the Pawsitive Action Team at some upcoming Sky Blue games this season.”
Sky Blue FC president and general manager Tony Novo said, “We are very fortunate to be able to partner with such a reputable health care organization. Meridian Health has consistently been rated one of the top performing health systems in New Jersey, and we are excited to be able to provide our players with high-quality treatment through Meridian’s staff.”
Sky Blue FC will play its first game of the season Saturday, April 12, in Kansas City. The first home game of the season will be on Saturday, April 19, at Yurcak Field at Rutgers University in Piscataway. Tickets are available by calling 888-SBFC-TIX (888-723-2849).
***ITALRobert Cavanaugh is an elite runner and the owner of RTC Training.***END