RICHMOND, Va.—As a student-athlete, your team becomes your family.  You play together, work together, eat together, travel together, live together.  You join a sisterhood of past, present and future athletes, a legacy of people who will know you and understand you even without meeting you.

When one of those sisters is lost, everyone feels it.  On February 9th, 2004, Nicole Megaloudis was killed in a car crash as she traveled back to VCU.  She had just completed her freshman season on the soccer team and was pursuing her dreams of helping those who were less fortunate than herself.

After such a tragedy, the Megaloudis family and the VCU soccer family rallied to find a way to honor Nicole.  Through the Nicole Megaloudis foundation, they created the annual "Make It Happen" 5k Run that raises money for the foundation and honors her contribution to VCU athletics.  This year, the foundation and women's soccer partnered with the VCU Center for Sport Leadership to host the 8th annual race.

Under sunny Saturday morning skies, nearly 100 runners, joggers and walkers joined the women's soccer team at Byrd Park in raising over $2,000 to support the foundation.  It was a VCU family affair with Head Women's Soccer coaches, Tim and Tiffany Sahaydak, as well as other members of the athletic department and the CSL faculty taking part in the day.

Participants were able to enjoy the run as well as participate in raffle giveaways.  Some prizes included a signed Shaka Smart basketball, a signed LA Galaxy soccer ball, and various gift cards to local restaurants.

At the end of the day, the money will go to support the mission of the Nicole Megaloudis foundation.  Deserving students will have a chance to go to college and make their dreams happen, and children in Haiti will get the supplies they need to live better lives.

And a family will continue to honor the life and legacy of their sister, Nicole.

For more information or to donate, please visit